ABC - Department for Genetics
Both basic and applied research are represented in the scientific program of the Department for Genetics. The highly autonomous scientific groups are the basic units of the Department. The projects of the Department introduce current techniques and latest results of molecular biology, genetics and genomics into agricultural research. The enormously high variability of pathogens represents a very serious challenge for researchers as well as for agriculture, human and animal healthcare. Therefore, most projects of the Department are focusing on the defense mechanisms against pathogens and host-pathogen interactions both in plants and animals. These topics include the study of the interactions between apple-bacteria Erwinia, chicken-bacteria Salmonella, pig-bacteria Ecoli, pepper-bacteria Xanthomonas, pepper-eelworms Meloidogyne, alfalfa-fungi Fusarium, pepper- virus TSWV. In addition, other “beneficial” mechanisms such as the symbiotic interaction between alfalfa-bacteria Sinorhizobium, role of algae in environmental research and the plant RNA quality control system (nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD)) are also investigated.
The rapid evolution of bacteria due to their outstanding genome plasticity represents a serious challenge for researchers as well as for actors in agriculture or human and animal healthcare. Genomic islands, plasmids and other mobile genetic elements play crucial role in spreading the pathogenicity factors and antibiotic resistance, thus in rapid adaptation and evolution of bacteria.
- Isolation and identification of microorganisms with biotechnological importance and their characterisation by microbiological and molecular biological approaches
- Development of new „starter” cultures, highlighting the character of wine from Balaton wine region
- Isolation and characterization of yeast strains from spontaneously fermented wines
In nature, plants are continuously challenged by microorganisms affecting their growth and production. These interactions can be detrimental (pathogenic), neutral (saprophytic), or beneficial (symbiotic). The research interest of our group is the genetic dissection of plant-microbe interactions and the aim of our research is to identify and analyze the function of plant genes involved in symbiotic and pathogenic interactions of plants.
Our lab has been studying the mechanism and regulation of plant Nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) system. NMD is a conserved eukaryotic quality control system, which identifies and degrades transcript containing early in-frame stop codons, thereby preventing the accumulation of the potentially harmful truncated proteins.