Special Issue "Microbial-Based Plant Biostimulants 2.0"

A special issue of Microorganisms (ISSN 2076-2607). This special issue belongs to the section "Plant Microbe Interactions".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2023 | Viewed by 1154

Special Issue Editor

Institut de Recherche en Biologie Végétale, Département de Sciences Biologiques, Université de Montréal, Montréal, QC, Canada
Interests: environmental microbiology; plant-microbe interaction; mycorrhizal symbiosis; fungal biology; microbial genomics
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue is the continuation of the previous Special Issue "Microbial-Based Plant Biostimulants".

In recent years, major investments have been made globally to develop innovative biotechnologies that will sustain food production while reducing the environmental footprint of agriculture. Among these innovations, plant biostimulants have gained popularity. In this context, plant biostimulants are defined as microorganism-based inoculants or substances derived from organisms, or a combination of both, that can be applied to plants to enhance nutrient uptake, protect against biotic and abiotic stress, and improve growth parameters (e.g., germination, flowering, fructification, maturity, and crop quality).

Although microbial-based plant biostimulants have been widely used in agriculture, horticulture and forestry, many scientific questions remain unanswered.  This Special Issue seeks research contributions that will advance our knowledge on the effectiveness of microbial-based plant biostimulants and their impact on indigenous microbial communities of soils, as well as on plant microbiota.

The main areas of interest in this Special Issue of Microorganisms on “Microbial-Based Plant Biostimulants 2.0” are as follows:

  • Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR);
  • Plant endophytes;
  • Mycorrhizal fungi;
  • Microbial biotechnology;
  • Bioinoculants and biostimulants;
  • Biocontrol.

Prof. Dr. Mohamed Hijri
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Microorganisms is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • bioinoculants
  • biostimulants
  • PGPR
  • endophytes
  • mycorrhiza
  • plant microbiota
  • sustainable agriculture.

Published Papers (1 paper)

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20 pages, 2341 KiB  
Mineral Solubilizing Rhizobacterial Strains Mediated Biostimulation of Rhodes Grass Seedlings
Microorganisms 2023, 11(10), 2543; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms11102543 - 12 Oct 2023
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Minerals play a dynamic role in plant growth and development. However, most of these mineral nutrients are unavailable to plants due to their presence in fixed forms, which causes significant losses in crop production. An effective strategy to overcome this challenge is using [...] Read more.
Minerals play a dynamic role in plant growth and development. However, most of these mineral nutrients are unavailable to plants due to their presence in fixed forms, which causes significant losses in crop production. An effective strategy to overcome this challenge is using mineral solubilizing bacteria, which can convert insoluble forms of minerals into soluble ones that plants can quickly assimilate, thus enhancing their availability in nutrient-depleted soils. The main objective of the present study was to isolate and characterize mineral solubilizing rhizobacteria and to assess their plant growth-promoting potential for Rhodes grass. Twenty-five rhizobacterial strains were isolated on a nutrient agar medium. They were characterized for solubilization of insoluble minerals (phosphate, potassium, zinc, and manganese), indole acetic acid production, enzymatic activities, and various morphological traits. The selected strains were also evaluated for their potential to promote the growth of Rhodes grass seedlings. Among tested strains, eight strains demonstrated strong qualitative and quantitative solubilization of insoluble phosphate. Strain MS2 reported the highest phosphate solubilization index, phosphate solubilization efficiency, available phosphorus concentration, and reduction in medium pH. Among tested strains, 75% were positive for zinc and manganese solubilization, and 37.5% were positive for potassium solubilization. Strain MS2 demonstrated the highest quantitative manganese solubilization, while strains MS7 and SM4 reported the highest solubilization of zinc and potassium through acidifying their respective media. The strain SM4 demonstrated the most increased IAA production in the presence and absence of L-tryptophan. The majority of strains were positive for various enzymes, including urease, catalase protease, and amylase activities. However, these strains were negative for coagulase activity except strains SM7 and MS7. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequencing, six strains, namely, SM2, SM4, SM5, MS1, MS2, and MS4, were identified as Bacillus cereus, while strains SM7 and MS7 were identified as Staphylococcus saprophyticus and Staphylococcus haemolyticus. These strains significantly improved growth attributes of Rhodes grass, such as root length, shoot length, and root and shoot fresh and dry biomasses compared to the uninoculated control group. The present study highlights the significance of mineral solubilizing and enzyme-producing rhizobacterial strains as potential bioinoculants to enhance Rhodes grass growth under mineral-deficient conditions sustainably. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microbial-Based Plant Biostimulants 2.0)
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