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24, chemin de Borde Rouge –Auzeville – CS52627
31326 Castanet Tolosan CEDEX - France

Dernière mise à jour : Mai 2018

Menu Logo Principal Université de Liège Université de Lille Université Picardie Jules Verne Associated institutions

UMR Transfrontalière BioEcoAgro (

Offer for a thesis in Food Biotechnology, Food Science, Physiology

The UMRt BioEcoAgro is pleased to propose a new thesis topic on the "Improvement of plant health by studying the synergistic effects of lipopeptide-producing bacteria lipopeptide-producing bacteria colonising the rhizosphere".

This thesis will be under the supervision of Prof. Leclerc and Dr. Krier.


Title of the thesis: Improving plant health by studying the synergistic effects of lipopeptide-producing bacteria that colonize the rhizosphere

Supervisor: LECLERE Valérie, PR,

Co-supervisor: KRIER François, MCF,

Laboratory: UMR-t 1158 BioEcoAgro (Institut Charles Viollette)


In the context of crop protection against phytopathogenic microorganisms, the use of rhizobacteria also called PGPR (Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria) have potential as biological control agents. In this study, it is envisaged the use of mixture of PGPR bacteria producing lipopeptides in order to improve, on the one hand, the colonization of the rhizosphere and on the other hand to obtain an improved effect of the protection of plants towards infections.

The bacteria studied will be selected on their ability to produce robust biofilms in the rhizosphere, this property being essential for good a colonization, and on the ability to produce large quantities of lipopeptides in the rhizosphere. Lipopeptides are biomolecules produced by microorganisms which have the important properties of being antimicrobial and particularly active against phytopatogenic fungi. The idea is to couple bacteria strongly colonizing the rhizosphere with bacteria which produce high amounts of lipopeptides in order to obtain a synergistic effect in the protection of crops. The most interesting mixtures of PGPR bacteria will be evaluated on their ability to protect plants and the most important parameters allowing the synergistic effect will be determined.
In this thesis work, it is planned to continue experiments by working with mixed cultures of lipopeptideproducing bacteria (Bacillus and Pseudomonas). It is planned to test the effect of B. amyloliquefaciens FZB42 and B. subtilis BBG131 in coculture. The idea is to observe the effects of a strain forming robust biofilms coupled with a strain which produces high levels of lipopeptides with antimicrobial activity.

At the end of this thesis work, the main expected results will be the selection of mixtures of PGPR strains allowing both good colonization of the rhizosphere and protection of the plant against phytopathogenic microorganisms as well as the determination important parameters involved in the synergistic effect of bacteria used in cocultures.

The results of this study will help to better control the protection of plants against phytopathogenic microorganisms through the use of PGPR bacteria. The plant model tested will be the tomato. Indeed, it is well controlled at the Charles Viollette Institute and the growth of this plant in a controlled environment is relatively simple and fast.

Planned recruitment date: 1st september 2021