‘Space farming’: Bacteria discovered on International Space Station could aid plant growth on Mars

Credit: Jay Wong
Credit: Jay Wong

A team led by scientists at the University of Southern California characterized four strains of bacteria isolated from the International Space Station (ISS) that could help plants withstand stressful conditions in space.

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The bacterial strains were found to grow optimally under extreme conditions in space. They have genetic sequences similar to Methylobacterium indicum which is involved in nitrogen fixation, phosphate solubilization, plant growth promotion, abiotic stress tolerance, and biocontrol activity against plant pathogens.

The study provides essential insights into space farming.

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