Biosafety and the Environmental Uses of Micro-Organisms

Conference Proceedings

image of Biosafety and the Environmental Uses of Micro-Organisms

Micro-organisms play a fundamental role in the environment. Yet their role is the result of complex biogeochemical processes by consortia of micro-organisms and the function of individual species is not clear in many cases.

This publication provides an overview of the current situation and relevant developments in environmental microbiology, as well as its potential application, which covers: use of micro-organisms for agriculture, production purposes, bioremediation, and cleaning purpose; environmental applications of microbial symbionts of insects; and environmental risk/safety assessment of the deliberate release of engineered micro-organisms.





Present and future use of transgenic micro-organisms

Biofertilizers are living microbial preparations which enhance or promote plant growth, relatively to a control without inoculation. A huge amount of research literature has been produced in the last 20 years concerning plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) related subjects, describing different micro-organisms acting on different plants, and proposing different mechanisms to explain the plant growth promotion effect. However, we still do not know which of the different in vitro mechanisms of biofertilizer action are responsible for the positive effects in the field. Biofertilizer technology has significantly developed in the market. The nature of multiple mechanisms discovered for PGPR actions and the possibility of genetically modifying a particular strain concerning a particular plant growth-promoting activity suggest that the use of genetically modified organisms such as biofertilizers will be an area of multiple and diverse possibilities of action in the near future. The study of the microbial ecology of this scenario and its dynamics will certainly improve the development of biofertilizer technology for the future of agriculture.


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