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.




Executive summary

Micro-organisms including bacteria and viruses are probably best known as pathogens causing disease in plants, man and other animals. At the same time, many microbial species also play a fundamental role in the functioning of the environment, being instrumental, for instance, in mineralization processes, nitrogen fixation and an array of other geochemical processes. Life on earth would not be possible without micro-organisms and the services that they provide.


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