In the Laboratory for Phytopathology, microbiological and molecular methods are applied for the investigation of different species of plant pathogens. The equipment of the laboratory allows photodocumentation, isolation of pathogens from diseased plant tissues, incubation, maintenance and preservation of microbial cultures, performance of in vitro inoculation experiments as well as microbiological and molecular characterisation of plant pathogens. Currently, the focus is laid on fungal plant pathogens that do not represent a particular risk for human health and are also non-problematic from a phytosanitary viewpoint.
The group of Phytopathology focuses on the investigation of different plant pathogenic organisms affecting crop species in South Tyrol. Particular attention is laid on the research of population structure and diversity of plant pathogens, their interaction with host plants and epidemiology of plant diseases. Furthermore, improved techniques for plant pathogen diagnosis and sustainable control of plant diseases shall be developed and implemented. Ongoing research projects target postharvest pathogens of apple and the chestnut blight fungus Chryphonectria parasitica.livestock production systems, while aiming at raising the health and welfare standards of cattle, small ruminants, broilers and laying hens.
The laboratory is equipped with a microbiological safety workbench (class II), a chemical hood, incubator, fridge, freezer and small equipment necessary for the preparation of microbiological and molecular investigations. The laboratory has access to microscopes and different molecular biology instruments as well as supplementary basic equipment shared with other research groups.