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Open AccessReview

Trichoderma: The “Secrets” of a Multitalented Biocontrol Agent

School of Bioengineering and Biosciences, Lovely Professional University, Jalandhar-Delhi G.T. Road (NH-1), Phagwara, Punjab 144411, India
School of Agriculture, Lovely Professional University, Delhi-Jalandhar Highway, Phagwara, Punjab 144411, India
Department of Agronomy, Faculty of Agriculture, Mansoura University, Mansoura 35516, Egypt
State Key Laboratory of Subtropical Silviculture, Zhejiang A&F University, Hangzhou 311300, China
Department of Agriculture, University of Pisa, I-56124 Pisa, Italy
CIRSEC, Centre for Climatic Change Impact, University of Pisa, Via del Borghetto 80, I-56124 Pisa, Italy
Dipartimento AGRARIA, Università Mediterranea di Reggio Calabria, Località Feo di Vito, SNC I-89124 Reggio Calabria, Italy
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Authors contributed equal.
Plants 2020, 9(6), 762;
Received: 25 May 2020 / Revised: 13 June 2020 / Accepted: 16 June 2020 / Published: 18 June 2020
The plant-Trichoderma-pathogen triangle is a complicated web of numerous processes. Trichoderma spp. are avirulent opportunistic plant symbionts. In addition to being successful plant symbiotic organisms, Trichoderma spp. also behave as a low cost, effective and ecofriendly biocontrol agent. They can set themselves up in various patho-systems, have minimal impact on the soil equilibrium and do not impair useful organisms that contribute to the control of pathogens. This symbiotic association in plants leads to the acquisition of plant resistance to pathogens, improves developmental processes and yields and promotes absorption of nutrient and fertilizer use efficiency. Among other biocontrol mechanisms, antibiosis, competition and mycoparasitism are among the main features through which microorganisms, including Thrichoderma, react to the presence of other competitive pathogenic organisms, thereby preventing or obstructing their development. Stimulation of every process involves the biosynthesis of targeted metabolites like plant growth regulators, enzymes, siderophores, antibiotics, etc. This review summarizes the biological control activity exerted by Trichoderma spp. and sheds light on the recent progress in pinpointing the ecological significance of Trichoderma at the biochemical and molecular level in the rhizosphere as well as the benefits of symbiosis to the plant host in terms of physiological and biochemical mechanisms. From an applicative point of view, the evidence provided herein strongly supports the possibility to use Trichoderma as a safe, ecofriendly and effective biocontrol agent for different crop species. View Full-Text
Keywords: abiotic stress tolerance; antagonism; antibiosis; biocontrol; fungi; mycoparasitism; pathogen; symbiosis abiotic stress tolerance; antagonism; antibiosis; biocontrol; fungi; mycoparasitism; pathogen; symbiosis
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Sood, M.; Kapoor, D.; Kumar, V.; Sheteiwy, M.S.; Ramakrishnan, M.; Landi, M.; Araniti, F.; Sharma, A. Trichoderma: The “Secrets” of a Multitalented Biocontrol Agent. Plants 2020, 9, 762.

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