The rhizosphere

15 - 16 January 2007


The following subjects will be addressed:

General introduction to the rhizosphere

Mycorhizal fungi or clusters roots: which strategy is the best?

Bacterial diversity and functional significance

Biological interactions in the rhizosphere


Michel Aragno, Université de Neuchâtel, Switzerland:
     "The rhizosphere : a hot spot of bacterial diversity"

Bryan Griffiths, Scottish Crop Research Institute, Scotland, U.K.:
     "The biodiversity - function debate from a microbial perspective"
     "Effects of rhizosphere fauna on plant growth and bacterial community structure"

Enrico Martinoia, Universität Zürich, Switzerland:
     "Physiology, biochemistry and ecology of cluster roots"

Wim van der Putten, Netherlands Insitute of Ecology NIOO, The Netherlands:
     "Multitrophic interactions in the underworld" 
     "A general overview of plants, root herbivores and their antagonists"

Sari Timonen, University of Helsinki, Finland:
     "Rhizospheres and their inhabitants"
     "Mycorhrizal fungi: their role in the rhizosphere"

programme and pre-course assignment

The programme will consist of talks by the invited speakers, short presentations by other participants, and general discussions on specific topics.
Participants are highly encouraged to present their own work in short presentations.

There will be time for discussion after each presentation and there will be a round table discussion at the end of each day. To prepare for these discussions, participants will be send 5 selected publications on the workshop topics and will be asked to prepare at least 2 questions based on what they have read and what they heard during the presentations.

The questions must be sent not later than 8 January 2007 to Christiane Bobillier.

Additional papers are available as a complement for ones who want to do some further reading.

general information

Dates: Monday 15  and Tuesday 16 January 2007

Schedule: 8.55- 18.00. Participant's dinner on Monday evening around 18.30.

Location: University of Neuchâtel, Unimail, Chemistry building (G, "Institut de chimie"), room B1

Credit points: 1.0 or 1.5 with presentation (category scientific activities)

Evaluation: Active participation including reading of literature.

Information: Please contact  Dr. Claire Le Bayon or the NCCR education officer Dr. Christiane Bobillier

Travel expenses: NCCR Ph.D. participants are eligible for reimbursement of incurred travel expenses by train (half-fare card, and 2nd class). Please send the original tickets (no copies, except for the general abonnement)  to Dr. Christiane Bobillier. No reimbursement for bus, taxi or car travel expenses will be paid.


This course is opened to all Ph.D. student, however priority is given to doctoral programme "Plants and their Environment" participants and NCCR Plant Survival Ph.D. students. Postdocs and diploma students are welcome depending on availability.

Maximum number of participants: 25. There are 11 places left.

Registration through the web only: registration form
Deadline: 11 January 2007