SPECIAL SESSION: Beneficial Microbes: From Isolation to Product Registration and the Regulatory Process
Exploring microorganisms from plant, soil, and other environments for biocontrol potential against crop pathogens and pests
Mathias Twizeyimana - AgBiome, Inc.
Every year an estimated 10-16% of global food production is lost to plant diseases and pests despite tremendous improvement in management practices over the years. The control of most important crop diseases and pests has heavily relied on the use of synthetic chemicals and resistant cultivars. Despite good efficacy of chemicals against most pathogens and pests, intensive use may result in resistant populations. Similarly, high variability in pathogen or pest may speed up the process of pathogen or pest populations overcoming the genetic resistance of selected plant cultivars. The discovery of biological products that can effectively control pathogens and pests may result in improved integrated pest management (IPM) programs. At AgBiome, we are building a core collection of sequenced microbes from plant-related environmental sources. We employ both the microbes and their sequences in the discovery of new biological products and traits for disease and pest control in crops. For biological products, each microbial isolate is screened in bioassays against a broad range of fungal pathogens, insect pests, and plant-parasitic nematodes. Microbial candidates with confirmed activity proceed to the fermentation and formulation processes before they are evaluated in the greenhouse and field.