Scientists have discovered that soil microbes can make plants more resistant to an aggressive disease – opening new possibilities for sustainable food production.
Bacterial wilt disease caused by Ralstonia solanacearum infects several plants including tomatoes and potatoes. It causes huge economic losses around the world especially in China, Indonesia and Africa.
Researchers from the University of York working with colleagues from China and the Netherlands, investigated the effect of the soil microbiome on the plant-pathogen interaction. Infections are often ‘patchy’ in the field not affecting the whole crop and the cause for this is unknown.
Dr Ville Friman from the Department of Biology said: “Even though we have discovered that the pathogen is present everywhere in tomato fields, it is not capable of infecting all the plants. We wanted to understand if this spatial variation could be explained by differences in soil bacterial communities.”
To study the effect of soil microbiome for disease development, the scientists used a newly developed experimental system that allowed repeated sampling of individual plants in a non-destructive manner. This allowed scientists to go back in time and compare healthy and diseased plant microbiomes long before visible disease symptoms.
The sampling method allowed them to compare the micro-organisms that were present in the soils of those plants that remained healthy or became infected. Their analysis showed that the microbiomes of surviving plants were associated with certain rare taxa and pathogen-suppressing Pseudomonas and Bacillus bacteria.
Dr Friman added: “We found that improved disease resistance could be transferred to the next plant generation along with the soil transplants analogous to faecal transplants used in medicine.
“Our results show that it is important to focus not only the pathogen but also the naturally-occurring beneficial micro-organisms present in the rhizosphere. While the beneficial role of microbes for humans and plants have been acknowledged for a long time, it has been difficult to disentangle the cause and effect and important bacterial taxa based on comparative data.”
The team are currently developing and testing different microbial inoculants for crop production. The research has opened up the possibility in the future that bacteria could be used as ‘soil probiotics’ to protect plants from pathogens.
The Latest on: Sustainable food production
via Google News
The Latest on: Sustainable food production
- The Sugar Substitute Market Is in for a Treat: Fooditive Launches New, Healthy and Sustainable Sweeteneron January 29, 2020 at 4:20 am
In 2019, Fooditive have partnered with sustainable third-party production company Bodec, allowing the zero-calorie sweetener to reach consumers through products in Dutch supermarkets. This year, it ...
- Scientists Turn 'Trash to Treasure' by Making Ultra-Strong Graphene From Coal, Plastic and Food Wasteon January 29, 2020 at 2:54 am
"This is a big deal," said lead scientist James Tour. "The world throws out 30 percent to 40 percent of all food, because it goes bad, and plastic waste is of worldwide concern." ...
- Q&A: The impact on climate denial on food securityon January 28, 2020 at 9:09 pm
Opportunities that he believes would enable the transformation of agricultural and food production systems are hampered by ... some of these ideas about carbon reduction, management, and sustainable ...
- UAE establishes new food security council to step up local production effortson January 28, 2020 at 6:20 pm
legislations and policies to enhance food security, and develop a sustainable local production. The ECFS will also submit periodic reports to the UAE Cabinet on the progress of initiatives and ...
- Dutch government and Rabobank invest $80m in sustainable agricultureon January 28, 2020 at 1:26 am
... who would not normally have access to these resources now have an alternative to finance their investments in sustainable food production. “As a cooperative bank, we see it as our role to help our ...
- Hollywood Studios Target Sustainability as Big Production Goalon January 27, 2020 at 4:08 pm
“I think that there’s a strong momentum behind supporting sustainable production practices,” says Colleen Bell ... as many as 89% of productions donated provisions to a food bank or charity. “A ...
- A sustainable alternative to crude oilon January 27, 2020 at 9:01 am
A research team from the Fraunhofer Society and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) led by chemist Volker Sieber has developed a new polyamide family which can be produced from a byproduct of ...
- How UAE is growing its own food in a sustainable wayon January 24, 2020 at 4:01 pm
Abu Dhabi authorities recently said they were tapping latest technology to grow crops locally as part of the food security strategy.
- Yara and IBM launch an open collaboration for farm and field data to advance sustainable food productionon January 23, 2020 at 10:14 am
Yara International (OSE: YAR), a global leader in crop nutrition and digital farming solutions, and IBM (NYSE: IBM), invite farmer associations, industry players, academia and NGOs from the food and a ...
- Yara International ASA: Yara and IBM launch an open collaboration for farm and field data to advance sustainable food productionon January 22, 2020 at 9:05 pm
To meet these commitments, we have taken the lead in developing digital farming tools for precision farming and work closely with partners throughout the whole food value chain to develop more climate ...
via Bing News