Rhizospheric Microbiome Engineering as a Sustainable Tool in Agriculture: Approaches and Challenges

  • Shubham Dubey
  • Shilpi SharmaEmail author


Rhizosphere is considered to be supportive of a high microbial diversity because of rich exudation from plant roots. Roots recruit a specific microbial community in this zone, which is beneficial to the plant. Potential of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) has been harnessed since years to serve as bioinoculants. Despite being an eco-friendly alternative to chemicals, and hence of crucial importance in sustainable agriculture, the amendment with single or multiple strains of PGPR has its own set of limitations. After decades of single (and multiple) strain amendments in agriculture, the newer approach is to engineer plant and/or microbiome in the rhizosphere to ultimately lead to enhanced growth of the plant and its ability to alleviate stress. With the recent concept of “holobiont” these two components are no longer separate entities. The present chapter focuses on engineering the rhizospheric microbiome by two approaches, viz. synthetic microbial communities and plant-mediated selection, so as to favour the respective plant’s growth. Studies that have attempted the approach have been critically presented. Also, the current limitations in taking the approaches to field have been discussed.


Synthetic microbial communities Rhizosphere Plant-mediated selection Microbial diversity 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biochemical Engineering and BiotechnologyIndian Institute of Technology DelhiNew DelhiIndia

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