The presence of certain naturally occurring bacteria in plants has a beneficial impact on  their health and growth. Just like the way good bacteria that live within our guts help keep us healthy, these bacteria can help plants to thrive. Researchers are analysing this symbiotic relationship between bacteria and plants, in the hope of improving the process in order to use bacteria as a growth- promoting agent. Aoibhinn finds out about a research project developed at LIT which has pulled off a major international coup by being chosen to travel and be tested by astronauts on the International Space Station next April.