Visit of PhD Student Flora O'Brien
I am a PhD student from the University of Southampton, and my project looks at how soil microbial communities can mediate above-ground plant and insect interactions. My current experiment aims to determine whether bacterial inoculation of cabbage plants can influence their susceptibility to aphid herbivory by altering the plant's production of defence compounds known as glucosinolates. The purpose of my short visit to iDiv was to carry out glucosinolate extraction and HPLC analysis of my plant samples. It has been great to meet the research group here and to learn new techniques in the lab. Given the opportunity, I would certainly like to come back for more experiments in the future.