The Università of Napoli Federico II is the second largest University in Italy, involved in all disciplines of scientific research. The BIOFECTOR team consists of two research groups, focused respectively on plant responses to environmental stresses and agricultural microbiology, belonging to the Department of Agricultural-Science. The research groups operate as true interdisciplinary teams to address complex issues, such as sustainable crop production under stress environments.
Tasks: Leadership of WP04, investigating perspectives or bio-effector applications to increase crop tolerance against environmental stress factors, such as limited nutrient availability, low soil temperature during early growth, drought or high salt concentrations. As a contribution to WP01 (Product Development) the group provides screening and production of bio-effectors adapted for salt-stress environments, based on microorganisms and plant extracts in close cooperation with the SME partners AGRIGES and BIOATLANTIS. Products and product combinations are tested in model experiments and small greenhouse trials (WP02), including also the investigation of functional mechanisms (WP03). Within the International Field Testing Network (WP08), the group provides field sites for validation and demonstration of the agronomic effectiveness and economic value of bio-effector strategies under real production conditions, characteristic for the Mediterranean agriculture.
The research Center “CERMANU” is an Inter-Departmental Institution of applied NMR spectroscopy, aimed at studying complex biological systems and their bioactivities. It is located in the Department of Agriculture in Portici near Napoli and gathers scientists from 8 different Departments carrying out research in the fields of agricultural chemistry, environment, agro-food and new materials.
Tasks: The group contributes to WP01 for the molecular characterization of microbial bioeffectors by NMR, for provision of compost extracts, humic acids, organic recycling fertilizers (WP06) and formulation of natural extraction products, partly enriched with beneficial microbes (WP02). Special emphasis is placed on adaptation of bio-effectors for improved availability of mineral nutrients in low fertilizer input (WP04) and organic farming systems (WP05). Moreover, the group provides analytical facilities (NMR spectroscopy) for the chemical characterisation of complex organic fertilizers, based on recycling products (WP06).
University of Napels (Italy)
BIOFECTOR is funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Programme | Grant Agmt. No. 312117