Microbiome engineering: Current applications and its future

Biotechnol J. 2017 Mar;12(3). doi: 10.1002/biot.201600099. Epub 2017 Jan 30.


Microbiomes exist in all ecosystems and are composed of diverse microbial communities. Perturbation to microbiomes brings about undesirable phenotypes in the hosts, resulting in diseases and disorders, and disturbs the balance of the associated ecosystems. Engineering of microbiomes can be used to modify structures of the microbiota and restore ecological balance. Consequently, microbiome engineering has been employed for improving human health and agricultural productivity. The importance and current applications of microbiome engineering, particularly in humans, animals, plants and soil is reviewed. Furthermore, we explore the challenges in engineering microbiome and the future of this field, thus providing perspectives and outlook of microbiome engineering.

Keywords: Agricultural productivity; Human health; Microbiome engineering; Microbiota.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture / methods
  • Animals
  • Bioengineering*
  • Ecology / methods
  • Gastrointestinal Tract / microbiology
  • Humans
  • Microbiota*
  • Models, Animal
  • Plants / microbiology
  • Soil Microbiology