Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Vol.98, No.2, 533-544, 2014
Unraveling the efficient applications of secondary metabolites of various Trichoderma spp.
Recent shift in trends of agricultural practices from application of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides to organic farming has brought into focus the use of microorganisms that carryout analogous function. Trichoderma spp. is one of the most popular genera of fungi commercially available as a plant growth promoting fungus (PGPF) and biological control agent. Exploitation of the diverse nature of secondary metabolites produced by different species of Trichoderma augments their extensive utility in agriculture and related industries. As a result, Trichoderma has achieved significant success as a powerful biocontrol agent at global level. The endorsement of Trichoderma spp. by scientific community is based on the understanding of its mechanisms of action against a large set of fungal, bacterial and in certain cases viral infections. However, it is still an agnostic view that there could be any single major mode of operation, although it is argued that all mechanisms operate simultaneously in a synchronized fashion. The central idea behind this review article is to emphasize the potentiality of applications of target specific secondary metabolites of Trichoderma for controlling phytopathogens as a substitute of commercially available whole organism formulations. With the aim to this point, we have compiled an inclusive list of secondary metabolites produced by different species of Trichoderma and their applications in diverse areas with the major emphasis on agriculture. Outlining the importance and diverse activities of secondary metabolites of Trichoderma besides its relevance to agriculture would generate greater understanding of their other important and beneficial applications apart from target specific biopesticides.