EVO-MPMI: From fundamental science to practical applications

In the unending coevolutionary dance between plants and microbes, each player impacts the evolution of the other. Here, we provide an overview of the burgeoning field of evolutionary molecular plant-microbe interactions (EVO-MPMI)-the study of mechanisms of plant-microbe interactions in the context of their evolutionary history-tracing its progression from foundational science to practical implementation. We present a snapshot of current research and delve into central concepts, such as conserved features and convergent evolution, as well as methodologies such as ancestral reconstruction. Moreover, we shed light on the practical applications of EVO-MPMI, particularly within the realm of disease control. Looking ahead, we discuss potential future trajectories for EVO-MPMI research, spotlighting the innovative tools and technologies propelling the discipline forward.