Rhizosphere engineering and management for sustainable agriculture

Ryan, P.R. and Dessaux, Y. and Thomashow, L.S. and Weller, D.M. (2009) Rhizosphere engineering and management for sustainable agriculture. Plant and Soil, 321 (1). pp. 363-383.

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This paper reviews strategies for manipulating plants and their root-associated microorganisms to improve plant health and productivity. Some strategies directly target plant processes that impact on growth, while others are based on our knowledge of interactions among the components of the rhizosphere (roots, microorganisms and soil). For instance, plants can be engineered to modify the rhizosphere pH or to release compounds that improve nutrient availability, protect against biotic and abiotic stresses, or encourage the proliferation of beneficial microorganisms. Rhizobacteria that promote plant growth have been engineered to interfere with the synthesis of stress-induced hormones such as ethylene, which retards root growth, and to produce antibiotics and lytic enzymes active against soilborne root pathogens. Rhizosphere engineering also can involve the selection by plants of beneficial microbial populations. For example, some crop species or cultivars select for and support populations of antibiotic-producing strains that play a major role in soils naturally suppressive to soil-borne fungal pathogens. The fitness of root-associated bacterial communities also can be enhanced by soil amendment, a process that has allowed the selection of bacterial consortia that can interfere with bacterial pathogens. Plants also can be engineered specifically to influence their associated bacteria, as exemplified by quorum quenching strategies that suppress the virulence of pathogens of the genus Pectobacterium. New molecular tools and powerful biotechnological advances will continue to provide a more complete knowledge of the complex chemical and biological interactions that occur in the rhizosphere, ensuring that strategies to engineer the rhizosphere are safe, beneficial to productivity, and substantially improve the sustainability of agricultural systems

Item Type: Article
Author Affiliation: CSIRO Plant Industry, GPO Box 1600, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia
Subjects: Crop Improvement > Biotechnology
Divisions: General
Depositing User: Syamala
Date Deposited: 19 Apr 2011 07:54
Last Modified: 19 Apr 2011 07:54
Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11104-009-0001-6
URI: http://eprints.icrisat.ac.in/id/eprint/1837

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