About this Research Topic
Soil salinization is one of the leading abiotic stresses faced by the agro-ecosystems across the globe and is also a prominent cause of desertification of land, particularly in arid and semi-arid regions. A substantial decrease in agricultural production has been witnessed due to the ill impacts of salinity. Drivers of soil salinization include unprecedented use of agro-chemicals, faulty irrigation practices and impact of climate change.
These changes have exacerbated the process of salinization and will certainly impact global food availability. Under these circumstances, reclamation of such stressed soils is of utmost importance to meet the food demands of the ever-increasing population and to improve the quality of the soil.
Approaches based on the application of chemical inputs or on the development of salt-tolerant varieties have not proven to be either sustainable or successful. Therefore, the adoption of a holistic method which is organic in origin, cost-effective and promises sustainability is need of the hour. In this regard, salt-tolerant plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) have shown great potential to alleviate salinity stress in plants. These beneficial soil microbes reside in the rhizosphere and together with root exudates can provide nutrients, growth hormones, antioxidants and systemic resistance to plants even under high salt concentrations.
Salt-tolerant PGPR also help the plant to tide over salinity and allied stresses by several other mechanisms such as maintaining the balance between K+ /Na+ ions, acquisition of osmolytes, providing stability to membrane lipids and eliciting transcription factors.
Although the literature has shown that salt tolerant PGPR or their metabolites can play a very important role in mitigating salinity stress and enhancing crop yields, there are still several bottlenecks which need to be removed.
This Research Topic will continue the scientific conversation initiated in the Research Topic Advanced Microbial Biotechnologies For Sustainable Agriculture with a more specific focus on mechanistic aspects of salt tolerant PGPR and their interactions with plant. The Topic will also cover articles related to bioformulations/ bioinoculants specialized for saline agro-ecosystems and for remediation of these habitats. We encourage authors to submit original research articles depicting the role of cutting edge biotechnology involving halotolerant or halophilic PGPR for enhancing the crop yields and remediation of saline soils. However, screening and observational studies will not be considered. The broad research areas covered in the Research Topic include:
1. Biochemical and molecular basis of salt tolerance in the tolerant PGPR
2. Basis and mechanisms of successful plant-microbe interactions in saline soils.
3. Role of primary and secondary metabolites of microbes (PGPR) in maintaining and improving the physiological traits of plant/ crop under salinity stress.
4. Rhizosphere ecobiome in saline soils – role of metagenomics and other omic approaches in studying the ecobiome and deciphering its role.
5. Designing of tailor-made bioinoculants involving salt tolerant or halophilic PGPR; use of carriers, metabolites, protectants, etc.
6. Detection of remediation of saline fields (where PGPR applied) by assessing microbial diversity and through molecular techniques.
Keywords: Plant-Growth-Promoting Rhizobacteria, Salinity, Bioremediation, Salt-Tolerance, Bioinoculants, Agro-Ecosystems
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.