Encapsulation of Microbial Isolates in Alginate Beads Designed to Increase Nutrient Uptake in Hydroponic Systems

  • Fatima Al Jallaf Al Ali

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Food security and water use are a global concern. As the global population increases and climate change affects agriculture lands, novel farming methods must be adopted to meet the demands of the growing population. The ability to provide the necessary food and nutrition, there needs to be an increase in the productivity and yield of current agricultural systems. If we are to meet these demands, there needs to be a concerted effort to regenerate soils by providing microbial communities. Rhizosphere bacteria from Abu Dhabi soils were isolated and encapsulated in sodium alginate beads in order to quantify the uptake of nutrients from the hydroponic system. In addition, a total microbial community profile metagenomics study is underway to identify community members and individual environmental microbial isolates. This work will help identify Abu Dhabi native microbial isolates designed to optimize nutrient uptake and increase water reuse in closed hydroponic growth systems. In conclusion, three isolates were isolated from UAE's soil. They show intriguing results regarding different categories of annotated genes. Furthermore, loading the beads with an environmental sample was successful and confirmed by Environmental Scanning Microscopy. A growing alternative to soil farming is hydroponics. Unfortunately, hydroponics has limited availability of beneficial rhizosphere bacteria. In this study, we are investigating the effect of Abu Dhabi's local rhizosphere microbes on nutrient uptake by plants grown in a closed hydroponics system.
Date of AwardMay 2017
Original languageAmerican English


  • Hydroponic Systems; Abu Dhabi; Food Security; Environmental Scanning Microscopy; Microbial Isolates; United Arab Emirates.

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