Our lab is fascinated by microbial communities, particularly fungal endophytes residing within the intercellular spaces of plant cells. These fungal endophytes form essential associations with plants, contributing significantly to their healthy growth and protection from herbivory. To isolate these endophytes accurately, we use a surface sterilization technique to eliminate any extraneous microbes present on the plant surface as follows:
Adapted from: Daru, B.H., Bowman, E.A., Pfister, D.H. & Arnold, A.E. (2018) A novel proof-of-concept for capturing the diversity of endophytic fungi preserved in herbarium specimens. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 374: 20170395 doi: 10.1098/rstb.2017.0395.