In nature, bacteria compete for carbon sources (energy), macronutrients, and micronutrients. As a part of this competition various microbes engage in their own form of chemical warfare by making antimicrobial compounds that work against competing microbes. We are most familiar with these compounds as many of our common antibiotics including polymyxin and bacitracin come from common soil spore forming microbes.
In addition to manufacturing antibiotic pharmaceuticals (which are highly refined compounds), the natural production of antimicrobial compounds is a key part of the science of using microbes to competitively exclude pathogenic and opportunistic pathogenic microbes.
Examples of applications using microbial competitive exclusion:
Erik Rumbaugh has been involved in biological waste treatment for over 20 years. He has worked with industrial and municipal wastewater facilities to ensure optimal performance of their treatment systems. He is a founder of Aster Bio (www.asterbio.com) specializing in biological waste treatment.
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