Research Topic

Advanced Microbial Biotechnologies For Sustainable Agriculture

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Plant responses to different environmental stresses are highly complex and involve alterations at the transcriptome, cellular, and physio-biochemical levels that hamper the growth, development, yield and quality of crops. Plant growth promoting microorganisms (PGPM), such as plant growth promoting bacteria ...

Plant responses to different environmental stresses are highly complex and involve alterations at the transcriptome, cellular, and physio-biochemical levels that hamper the growth, development, yield and quality of crops. Plant growth promoting microorganisms (PGPM), such as plant growth promoting bacteria (PGPB), arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), and rhizobia, can improve plant growth and protect plants from disease and abiotic stress through a wide variety of mechanisms, including bioprotection (e.g. induction of systemic resistance and biological control), biofertilization (e.g. production of growth regulators or phytohormone, solubilization of insoluble mineral nutrients) as well as phytostimulation (induction of molecular signaling networks in plant-microbe interaction). Although many PGPM strains have been isolated and characterized so far, only a few functional PGPM strains have been successfully applied in agricultural systems. The PGPM formulation and inoculation, as well as field-delivery methods, are essential components needed to apply PGPM to crops in the field. Therefore, developing technologies for exploring microbial microenvironments, and understanding the mechanisms behind plant beneficial microbial activities are becoming important research goals due to concerns about the adverse impacts of environmental stresses on agriculture sustainability and global food security.

The present Research Topic will focus on different areas including, but not limited to:

- Understanding the molecular basis of PGPM to enhance the growth and resistance of crops against biotic (e.g. pathogens and pests) and abiotic (e.g. drought and salinity) stresses using multi-omics approaches encompassing metagenomics (microbial potential), proteomics (microbial function) and metabolomics (microbial activity) studies on specific plant-microbe-stress system
- Assessing the potential applications of various microbial biotechnologies/delivery methods (e.g. seed coating, seed biopriming, foliar application, direct soil application, and molecular farming, etc.) with new microbial resources (PGPB, AMF, and rhizobia) in sustainable agriculture under diverse climatic and edaphic conditions
- The role of PGPM in alleviating biotic and abiotic stresses in crops, negative and positive side effects, efficacy at the laboratory, field, and natural vegetation scale
- The factors/conditions that influence the microbe-mediated plant stress resistance and survival rate of introduced microorganisms
- The ecological behavior of inoculated PGPM including their survival dynamics and the interaction with indigenous microorganisms in the rhizosphere (the impact on the diversity, structure, and activity of microbial communities)
- The use of molecular tools for monitoring the changes in microbial communities during agricultural practices
- The specific molecular biomarkers for evaluating the fate and activity of introduced microorganisms during the crop growth period
- The use of the combination of detection techniques for monitoring the survival and colonization pattern of inoculants

This Research Topic welcomes contributions dissecting the microbial biotechnologies (e.g. formulation and inoculation, inoculum delivery, and colonization patterns) and the roles of PGPM in sustainable agriculture with an emphasis on the mechanisms underlying plant-microbe-soil interactions in the rhizosphere. We encourage the submission of manuscripts focusing on recent microbial biotechnological advances from gene to the field, and their fundamental biological basis by using molecular, biochemical, and genetic approaches. The following article types are particularly welcomed: Original Research, Reviews, and Opinions.


Keywords: Plant Growth Promoting Microorganisms, Biotechnological Interventions, Biotic And Abiotic Stresses, Inoculum Delivery, Sustainable Agriculture, Behavior Of Inoculated Microorganisms, Colonization Pattern


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.

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