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Combating Fusarium Infection Using Bacillus-Based Antimicrobials


Despite efforts to control toxigenic Fusarium species, wilt and head-blight infections are destructive and economically damaging diseases that have global effects. The utilization of biological control agents in disease management programs has provided an effective, safe, and sustainable means to control Fusarium-induced plant diseases. Among the most widely used microbes for biocontrol agents are members of the genus Bacillus. These species influence plant and fungal pathogen interactions by a number of mechanisms such as competing for essential nutrients, antagonizing pathogens by producing fungitoxic metabolites, or inducing systemic resistance in plants. The multivariate interactions among plant-biocontrol agent-pathogen are the subject of this study, in which we survey the advances made regarding the research on the Bacillus-Fusarium interaction and focus on the principles and mechanisms of action among plant-growth promoting Bacillus species. In particular, we highlight their use in limiting and controlling Fusarium spread and infestations of economically important crops. This knowledge will be useful to define strategies for exploiting this group of beneficial bacteria for use as inoculants by themselves or in combination with other microbes for enhanced crop protection.

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