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SINGLE AND COMBINED ABIOTIC STRESSES IMPACT THE ROOT EXUDATION PATTERNS IN DIFFERENT MAIZE ROOT TYPES
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  • Raphael Tiziani,
  • Maria Begona Miras Moreno,
  • Antonino Malacrinò,
  • Rosa Vescio,
  • Luigi Lucini,
  • Tanja Mimmo,
  • Stefano Cesco,
  • AGOSTINO SORGONA'
Raphael Tiziani
Free University of Bozen-Bolzano
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Maria Begona Miras Moreno
Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore Facoltà di Scienze Agrarie Alimentari e Ambientali
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Antonino Malacrinò
Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
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Rosa Vescio
Università degli Studi Mediterranea di Reggio Calabria
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Luigi Lucini
Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
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Tanja Mimmo
Libera Universita di Bolzano
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Stefano Cesco
Free University of Bozen-Bolzano
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AGOSTINO SORGONA'
Università degli Studi Mediterranea di Reggio Calabria
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Abstract

Root exudates play an essential role in plant-soil-abiotic stress interactions. However, we still know little about the influence of stress combinations on the root exudation profile. Using targeted and untargeted metabolomics, here we test the effect of drought, heat stress, and their combination on the maize root exudates, also considering the differences that might exist between root types (seminal and primary) and root zones (apical and sub-apical). In addition, we built an analytical framework that relate the root exudation profile with the characterization of the rhizosphere bacterial community, enabling us to dissect the interactions between specific root exudates and microbial taxa. Our results suggest that the composition of root exudates has a different outcome according to the single or combined stress and to the root zone but not between root types. Further, we found that stress-specific exudates influence the relative abundance of specific microbial taxa, some of which are known to be beneficial microorganisms. Therefore, the stress-specific root exudate composition selecting specific microbial taxa, here observed, represent a contribute on the effects of climate changes on crops increasing thus the potential impact on the current trend of crafting agricultural practices within a wider point of view of plants-microbe-environment interactions.