Metagenomics: mapping the mysteries of soil

A typical teaspoon of agricultural soil contains more than a billion living organisms. This biodiversity plays a key role in the ability of soil to support plant life, including agricultural crops, although identifying and counting soil microbes is an incredibly difficult task. But as the FT’s science editor Clive Cookson explains, new molecular fingerprinting technology known as metagenomics is coming to the rescue.

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