Plant Cell Reports

, Volume 37, Issue 12, pp 1599–1609 | Cite as

Plant growth promoting bacteria: role in soil improvement, abiotic and biotic stress management of crops

  • Abdul MajeedEmail author
  • Zahir Muhammad
  • Habib Ahmad


Agricultural production—a major contributing factor towards global food supply—is highly reliant on field crops which are under severe threats ranging from poor soil quality, biotic, abiotic stresses and changing climatic conditions. To overcome these challenges, larger exertions are required to boost production of agricultural crops in a defensible mode. Since the evolution of fertilizers and pesticides, global crop productivity has experienced an unprecedented elevation, but at the cost of environmental and ecological unsustainability. To enhance the agricultural outputs in a sustainable way, the novel and eco-friendly strategies must be employed in agriculture, which would lead to reduced use of hazardous chemicals. Thus, the utilization of our knowledge about natural growth stimulators can lead to decrease reliance on fertilizers and pesticide which are widely used for increasing crop productivity. Among beneficial microbes, plant growth promoting bacteria offers excellent opportunities for their wide utilization in agriculture to manage soil quality and other factors which correspond to limited growth and yield output of major field crops. The aim of this review is to examine the potential role of plant growth stimulating bacteria in soil fertility and enabling crops to cope with biotic and abiotic challenges.


Antagonism Bioremediation Nitrogen fixation Nutrient mobilization Production of toxins Synergistic effects Yield elevation 


Author contribution statement

All the authors have equal contribution. All authors read and approved the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BotanyGovernment Degree College Naguman PeshawarPeshawarPakistan
  2. 2.Department of BotanyUniversity of PeshawarPeshawarPakistan
  3. 3.Islamia College University PeshawarPeshawarPakistan

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