Photofermentative hydrogen production by purple non-sulfur bacteria is a potential candidate among biological hydrogen production methods. Hydrogen is produced under anaerobic conditions in light using different organic substrates as carbon source. The hydrogen evolution occurs mainly through the catalytic activity of the nitrogenases under non-repressive concentrations of ammonia. However, total hydrogen production is constrained due to several reasons in purple non-sulfur (PNS) bacteria, such as consumption of hydrogen by uptake hydrogenase, inefficient hydrogen production capacity of nitrogenase, limited electron flow to the nitrogenase, sensitivity of nitrogenase towards ammonia, etc. Hence, PNS bacteria need to be manipulated genetically to overcome these limitations and to make the process practically feasible. This review focuses on various approaches for the genetic improvement of biohydrogen production by PNS bacteria. (C) 2010 Professor T. Nejat Veziroglu. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.