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Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions (MPMI) Research Group (Z.Orlovskis lab)

The long-term goal of the MPMI research group is to understand how intra-plant and inter-plant systemic signals affect and are shaped by plant beneficial microbiota in order to help plant defences against pest and pathogen attacks. Our ambition is to make fundamental discoveries in model plants (Medicago truncatula, Arabidopsis thaliana, Daucus carota) as well as economically important crop species that could become new crop models in the future (Betula pendula, Populus spp. etc.). The application of our research is aimed at sustainably engineering and supplementing plant microbiota to boost plant defences in high yielding cultivars where genetic breeding or engineering may be challenging or limited.

Zigmunds Orlovskis, PhD

Zigmunds Orlovskis, PhD

Head of the scientific group, senior researcher


Zigmunds Orlovskis, PhD, zigmunds.orlovskis@biomed.lu.lv

Annija Kotova, annija.kotova@biomed.lu.lv

Ēriks Voroņins, eriks.voronins@biomed.lu.lv

Daniels Pugačevskis, daniels.pugacevskis@biomed.lu.lv

Kārlis Trevors Blūms, karlis.blums@biomed.lu.lv

Areas for searching partners

  • Plant-mycorrhiza interactions

  • Plant defence & immunity

  • Plant systemic resistance

  • Inter-plant signals

  • Plant-pathogen interactions

  • Plant-microbe-insect vector biology

10 the most representative publications for the scientific group

  1. Orlovskis Z, Reymond, P. (2020) Pieris brassicae eggs trigger inter-plant systemic acquired resistance against a foliar pathogen in Arabidopsis. New Phytologist, doi: 10.1111/nph.16788
  2. Al-Subhi AM, Al-Sadi AM, Al-Yahyai RA, Chen Y, Mathers T, Orlovskis Z. et al. (2020) Witches’ brooms contribute to phytoplasma epidemics by boosting phytoplasma titers and attracting insect vectors. Plant Disease, doi.org/10.1094/PDIS-10-20-2112-RE
  3. Orlovskis Z, Canale MC, Kuo CH et al. (2017) A few sequence polymorphisms among isolates of Maize bushy stunt phytoplasma associate with organ proliferation symptoms in infected maize plants. Annals of Botany, doi:10.1093/aob/mcw213
  4. Orlovskis Z, Hogenhout SA. (2016) A bacterial parasite effector mediates insect vector attraction in host plants independently of developmental changes. Frontiers in Plant Science, doi:10.3389/fpls.2016.00885
  5. Orlovskis Z, Canale MC, Thole V et al. (2015) Insect-borne plant pathogenic bacteria: getting a ride goes beyond physical contact. Current Opinion in Insect Science, 9: 16-23, doi: 10.1016/j.cois.2015.04.007
  6. MacLean AM, Orlovskis Z, Kowitwanich K, et al. (2014) Phytoplasma Effector SAP54 Hijacks Plant Reproduction by Degrading MADS-box Proteins and Promotes Insect Colonization in a RAD23-Dependent Manner. PLoS Biology 12(4): e1001835, doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001835