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Microbiome Variation Across Populations of Desert Succulent Zygophyllum Gatarensis

Key personals: Abdul Latif Khan (Uni of Houston), Daniel Schachtman and Lucas Dantas Lopes (U of Nebraska-Lincoln), Ahmed Al-harrasi, Sajjad Asaf, Saqib Bilal (University of Nizwa), Kerri Crawford (UH)

We are investigating the phytomicrobiome of Zygophyllum qatarensis Hadidi (Basionym of Z. hamiense var qatarense, Tetraena qatarensis) and its four major populations in the Empty Quarter of Oman. Zygophyllum qatarensis is a drought and salinity resistant plant endemic to the Arabian Peninsula where it has grown on course, stony, or calcareous sandy soils. We investigating it for the first time the rhizosphere and root/shoot endosphere microbiome of Z. qatarensis to describe its microbiome across different populations growing in two different soil conditions (gravel and sandy). Further, we also aimed to isolate and identify plant growth-promoting microbes that can extend beneficial traits to crop plants.