About this Research Topic

Manuscript Submission Deadline 04 August 2022
Manuscript Extension Submission Deadline 03 September 2022

Biotic and abiotic stresses are the major challenge affecting crop production world over. Suboptimal environmental factors that act singly or simultaneously, such as temperature extremes, drought, waterlogging, salinity, and pollutants such as heavy metals, are the major stressors imposing restriction on ...

Biotic and abiotic stresses are the major challenge affecting crop production world over. Suboptimal environmental factors that act singly or simultaneously, such as temperature extremes, drought, waterlogging, salinity, and pollutants such as heavy metals, are the major stressors imposing restriction on choice of the crops and responsible for losses in agricultural production. Abiotic stresses cause more than 50% losses in crop productivity and are the major concerns for food and nutritional security. Several researches attributed 15%–40% of the yield losses to temperature extremes, 20% to salinity, and 17% to drought besides other forms of stresses. Climate change has increased the intensity of heat stress which could reduce crop yields by 15%–35% for every 3–4°C increase of temperature.

Crop plants need to cope up adverse environmental and edaphic conditions with their intrinsic biological mechanisms, failing which their growth, development, and productivity suffer. Microorganisms, the most natural inhabitants of diverse environments exhibit enormous metabolic capabilities to mitigate abiotic stresses. Since microbial interactions with plants are an integral part of the living ecosystem, they are believed to be the natural partners that modulate local and systemic mechanisms to offer defense under adverse external conditions. Plant-microbe interactions comprise complex mechanisms within the plant cellular system which needs to be explored to cope up such harsh situations.

Global food security is under threat because of decline in cultivable land, climate change and emergence of edaphic and biotic stressors. Under extreme conditions, soil, plant and microorganisms form a unique mutualistic relationship. Plants secrete exudates from roots which act as chemo-attractants for soil microorganisms and leads to the development of their specific rhizospheric microbiome. The altered microbiome imparts multifaceted benefit to the host to adapt in stressed environment. The microbiome form structural relationship to extend the plant root absorptive surface area, increase the reach of root system to growth limiting resources through increased solubilization, mineralization and translocation. It also altered the ionic ratio to impart tolerance to sodicity and salinity by modifying the nature and extent of the root exudation and fixation of the atmospheric nitrogen. Besides improving plant nutrition the substantial hyphal biomass produced by AMF also play critical roles in improving soil structure, porosity, pore size distribution, water use efficiency and activity of the beneficial microorganisms. Hence, this issue will cover the multifaceted beneficial plant-microbe interactions including PGPRs rhizobia symbiosis; and AMF, PGPRs for abiotic stress mitigation and enhancing crop performance.

The broad research areas covered in the research topic include:

1. Interactions between microbial communities and host plants under extreme conditions.

2. The function of microbiome involved in the transformation, and processes under extreme conditions.

3. Dynamics of microbial ecology and their function influencing plant health and crop productivity under extreme conditions.

4. Role of rhizosphere microbial communities of extreme environment in maintaining and improving the physiological properties of plants under such conditions/abiotic stresses.

5. Assessing microbial diversity and communities of extreme environment through molecular approaches (metagenomics and other omic approaches) and deciphering their role.

6. Mechanism of Soil-Plant–Microbe interaction and their importance in sustainable agriculture in extreme environment.

7. Deciphering the specificity of soil- plant-microbes in such extreme environment through omic approaches

8. Induction of gene expression and molecular machinery of plants in response to soil-microbial interaction in extreme environment.

9. Rhizosperic maniapulation for nutrition of crops in stressed soil environment and low input agricultural production system

10. Microbial fertilizers for plant nutrition under organic and natural farming

Keywords: Soil-Plant–Microbe interaction, extreme environment, rhizospheric microbiome, sustainable agriculture


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