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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 1999 Feb 1;171(1):1-9.

Biocontrol of plant disease: a (gram-) positive perspective.

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Department of Plant Pathology, University of Wisconsin-Madison 53706, USA.


Biological control offers an environmentally friendly alternative to the use of pesticides for controlling plant diseases. Unfortunately, growers continue to use chemical control over biological agents, and lack of knowledge often contributes to the downfall of a biocontrol agent. Knowledge of the biological environment in which the agent will be used and of how to produce a stable formulation are both critical to successful biocontrol. Certain Gram-positive bacteria have a natural formulation advantage over their Gram-negative counterparts: the spore. Although the Gram-positive bacteria have not been as well represented in the biocontrol literature, their spore-forming abilities and historical industrial uses bode well for biocontrol success. Here we describe several systems utilizing Gram-positive biocontrol agents that have been researched in depth and provide models for the future of biocontrol.

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