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Beneficial soil-borne bacteria and fungi: a promising way to improve plant nitrogen acquisition

Abstract : Nitrogen (N) is an essential element for plant productivity, thus, it is abundantly applied to the soil in the form of organic or chemical fertilizers that have negative impacts on the environment. Exploiting the potential of beneficial microbes and identifying crop genotypes that can capitalize on symbiotic associations may be possible ways to significantly reduce the use of N fertilizers. The best-known example of symbiotic association that can reduce the use of N fertilizers is the N 2-fixing rhizobial bacteria and legumes. Bacterial taxa other than rhizobial species can develop associative symbiotic interactions with plants and also fix N. These include bacteria of the genera Azospirillum, Azotobacter, and Bacillus, some of which are commercialized as bio-inoculants. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi are other microorganisms that can develop symbiotic associations with most terrestrial plants, favoring access to nutrients in a larger soil volume through their extraradical mycelium. Using combinations of different beneficial microbial species is a promising strategy to boost plant N acquisition and foster a synergistic beneficial effect between symbiotic microorganisms. Complex biological mechanisms including molecular, metabolic, and physiological processes dictate the establishment and efficiency of such multipartite symbiotic associations. In this review, we present an overview of the current knowledge and future prospects regarding plant N nutrition improvement through the use of beneficial bacteria and fungi associated with plants, individually or in combination.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, May 11, 2022 - 9:11:50 AM
Last modification on : Friday, August 5, 2022 - 2:38:11 PM


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Alia Dellagi, Isabelle Quillere, Bertrand Hirel. Beneficial soil-borne bacteria and fungi: a promising way to improve plant nitrogen acquisition. Journal of Experimental Botany, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2020, 71 (15), pp.4469 - 4479. ⟨10.1093/jxb/eraa112⟩. ⟨hal-03664489⟩



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