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Microbiological Research
Vol. 167, No.
4, 2012; Pages: 194 - 198

HarpinPss-mediated enhancement in growth and biological control of late leaf spot in groundnut by a chlorothalonil-tolerant Bacillus thuringiensis SFC24

Kondreddy Anil, Appa Rao Podile

Department of Plant Sciences, University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad 500046, India.


Chemical and biological approaches have been adopted to increase the growth and yield of crops and reduce loss due to diseases. We have adopted an integrated approach, where both direct antagonism and induced resistance were combined to reduce the incidence of late leaf spot (LLS) disease in groundnut caused by Phaeoisariopsis personata. Chitinolytic chlorothalonil-tolerant soil bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis SFC24 (Bt SFC24) was manipulated in vitro to express secretable form of elicitor protein harpinPss of Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae. Severity of the LLS decreased by 65% when the leaves were sprayed with B. thuringiensis expressing harpinPss (Bt-pss). As seed treatment, there was an increase in growth of groundnut. Bt and Bt-pss accounted to 13% and 36% increase in shoot length. Expression of a secretable form of harpinPss thus improved the ability of B. thuringiensis SFC24 to promote growth and control LLS in groundnut. In this new approach a chlorothalonil-tolerant chitinolytic bacterium was genetically engineered to secrete elicitor harpinPss for dual benefit of growth promotion and disease control.

Keywords: Bacillus thuringiensis; Groundnut late leaf spot; HarpinPss; Biological control; Growth promotion



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