Science Fair

Bacteria-Based Plan To Solve The Food Crisis

With Girls Do Hack soon approaching, you have to read what three girls did to win the Google Science Fair and potentially help solve the world’s food crisis. The trio spent 11 months testing the impact a bacteria called rhizobia would have when added to different crops. Business Insider has the story of Ciara Judge, Sophie Healy-Thow and Emer Hickey.

“After 11 months of hard work and dedication, the three teen microbiologists discovered that they could make crops yield more food and shorten the time it takes a plant to sprout from a seed — a process called germination. They shorten this time by infecting the crops with a bit of bacteria that’s been known to be advantageous to other crop plants.

Their results have huge implications for increasing agricultural productivity and easing world hunger.

The key to their success is a type of bacteria called rhizobia, which lives inside nodules, or the little nubs you sometimes see on plant roots. While we usually think of bacteria as dangerous, these are actually helpful to the plants. By converting nitrogen from the air into helpful compounds like ammonia, the bacteria aid plant growth.”

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