New Marie Curie Doctoral Programme to use pathogens as biocontrol agents of harmful algae and tackle diseases of seaweeds
The Marie Curie Doctoral Network ‘Pathogens of Algae for Biosecurity and Biocontrol (PHABB) held its kick-off meeting at the MNHN in January 2024. Funded by the European Union and UK Research & Innovation for a total sum of 2.8 million euro for four years, this project is coordinated by the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris and the University of Aberdeen in the UK. It connects academic partners and SMEs from Austria, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Scotland, Spain, Portugal and The Netherlands.
PHABB foresees the recruitment and interdisciplinary training of 10 PhD students towards designing novel and sustainable solutions for biocontrol of harmful algae by understanding their pathogens, and towards controlling the diseases of cultivated macroalgae. To achieve this, it will tackle the biological and evolutionary processes linked to microbial community dynamics, virulence and host specificity of pathogens that target desirable or harmful algae in freshwater and marine environments. This new knowledge will be applied towards developing and implementing novel, durable biosecurity and disease control strategies that support natural ecosystems and allow for a reduced use in chemical pesticides.
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