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Visva-Bharati University names newly-discovered plant growth bacterium after Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore
Photo Courtesy: wikipedia.org

Visva-Bharati University names newly-discovered plant growth bacterium after Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 24 Dec 2023, 03:57 pm

Shantiniketan: A team of scientists from Visva-Bharati University’s botany department has discovered a bacterium with the ability to boost plant growth and named it 'Pantoea Tagorei' after Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, a report in the media said.

Visva-Bharati is a public central university and an Institute of National Importance located in West Bengal's Shantiniketan.

According to microbiologist Bomba Dam, who led the study, this bacterium holds immense potential for transforming agricultural methods.

Bomba Dam's team included research assistants Raju Biswas, Abhijit Mishra, Abhinav Chakraborty, Pooja Mukhopadhyay, and Sandeep Ghosh, the report said.

Bomba Dam and his team discovered 'Pantoea Tagorei' by isolating the bacteria from the soil in Santiniketan's Sonajhuri and later in Jharia's coal mining belt.

This bacterium efficiently extracts potassium from soil, enhancing plant growth by solubilizing potassium and phosphorus and fixing nitrogen.

Identified as a new and unique species, 'Pantoea Tagorei' has the potential to reduce the need for commercial fertilizers, cutting agricultural costs and boosting crop yields. The discovery has been officially recognized by the Association of Microbiologists of India (AMI).

The findings were also published in the Indian Journal of Microbiology.

The team said naming the unique bacterium after Tagore is the best way to honour the poet, who was also the founder of Visva Bharati University.

Dam referred to the visionary agricultural pursuits of Tagore and his son Rathindranath Tagore’s agricultural pursuits.

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