Tecnologies per llicenciar

Bacteria-based biostimulant to increase crop protection against abiotic stress, crop quality and overall yield improvement


  • Rapeseed (Brassica napus):
    ✓ Yield improvement
    ✓ Resistance to freezing temperatures
    ✓ Tolerance to salinity (drought conditions)
  • Tomato (Solanum lycoperiscum):
    ✓ Yield improvement.
    ✓ Resistance to freezing temperatures.
    ✓ Improvement of fruit quality


This new biostimulant provides multiple benefits:

  • Effectiveness in protecting against cold and salinity, which has been demonstrated in crops.
  • The technology is based on bacterial strains (Pararhizobium sp.) that have not been reportedly isolated before, hence promoting species diversification.
  • Easy to scale, given the fact that the strains are stable and have suitable growth conditions for the industry (between 20 and 30°C).
  • It provides an improvement in crop quality in addition to the protection against abiotic stresses.
  • It also provides a yield improvement, that has been proven in both rapeseed and tomato crops.

Objective of the collaboration

The represented institution is looking for a collaboration that leads to the commercial exploitation of the presented invention. The ideal scenario for the institution would be to reach an agreement to transfer the technology usage by sale or a license (exclusive or non-exclusive) and to collaborate in developing the technology in a pathway toward application. However, the form, terms, and conditions of the collaboration can be openly discussed if the presented technology is of interest.

Intellectual Property

A European Patent Application has been submitted in June 2023.




Isabel Durán
Email: iduran@fbg.ub.edu
Tel: +34 934 037281

The Challenge

Global warming’s impact is one of the most discussed topics to this day in our society. Over the last few decades, warm areas have experienced sudden changes in temperature. Winters are becoming progressively colder and this represents an obstacle for some industries, such as agri-food. These temperature changes, together with other global warming consequences such as a general increase in soil salinity due to drought conditions, have caused the deterioration of crops, reducing both their quality and productivity. The huge impact global warming has had, and still has, on crops has created an urgent need to develop new tools that allow crop resistance to these adverse conditions. To improve crop yield, synthetic fertilizers are extensively used, but they present a series of environmental and health risks. Particularly, fertilizers can pollute soil, water, and air, causing harm to the environment and disrupting the natural ecosystem. In addition, exposure to these chemical products can pose health risks to farm workers and consumers, as these compounds can sometimes be toxic and harmful to living organisms. Doses of chemical fertilizers could be reduced by combining them with other bio-based products, offering a sustainable and eco-friendly solution to the problems caused by the excessive use of these products while promoting plant growth and increasing crop yields.
In this context, researchers from the University of Barcelona (UB) have developed a new biostimulant based on bacterial strains that can be an effective and safe option for current fertilizing methods.

Technology description

The researchers have developed a biostimulant based on Pararhizobium sp. strains isolated in their lab. The biostimulant, not only increases crops’ protection against abiotic stress (more specifically cold and salinity) but has also been proven to increase overall crop production and quality.

Current stage of development

The researchers have already validated the efficiency of this new biostimulant on rapeseed and tomato crops. In the case of the tomato, the biostimulant enhanced the crop’s yield, provided it with tolerance to cold temperatures, and improved the crop’s quality. When applying it to rapeseed crops, the crop showed improved yield, resistance to cold temperatures, and tolerance to salinity.
The following steps have been proposed to increase the technology’s TRL:

  • Biochemical assays are being developed to determine the mechanism of action of the Pararhizobium sp. strains on crops.
  • Testing the biostimulant’s efficacy on other crops is being considered.


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Tags: Life Sciences, Alimentació


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