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Plant and Soil
366, No. (1-2), 2013; Pages: 585 - 603

The effect of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria on the growth of rice (Oryza sativa L.) cropped in southern Brazilian fields

Rocheli de Souza, Anelise Beneduzi, Adriana Ambrosini, Pedro Beschoren da Costa, Jacqueline Meyer, Luciano K. Vargas, Rodrigo Schoenfeld, Luciane M. P. Passaglia

Departamento de Genética, Instituto de Biociências, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Av. Bento Gonçalves, 9500, Caixa Postal 15.053, Prédio 43312, sala 207b, Porto Alegre, RS, CEP 91501-970, Brasil.


Background and Aims

Several strains of rhizobacteria may be found in the rhizospheric soil, on the root surface or in association with rice plants. These bacteria are able to colonize plant root systems and promote plant growth and crop yield through a variety of mechanisms. The objectives of this study were to isolate, identify, and characterize putative plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) associated with rice cropped in different areas of southern Brazil.


Bacterial strains were selectively isolated based on their growth on three selective semi-solid nitrogen-free media. Bacteria were identified at the genus level by PCR-RFLP 16S rRNA gene analysis and partial sequencing methodologies. Bacterial isolates were evaluated for their ability to produce indolic compounds and siderophores and to solubilize phosphate. In vitro biological nitrogen fixation and the ability to produce 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate deaminase were evaluated for each bacterial isolate used in the inoculation experiments.


In total, 336 bacterial strains were isolated representing 31 different bacterial genera. Strains belonging to the genera Agrobacterium, Burkholderia, Enterobacter, and Pseudomonas were the most prominent isolates. Siderophore and indolic compounds producers were widely found among isolates, but 101 isolates were able to solubilize phosphate. Under gnotobiotic conditions, eight isolates were able to stimulate the growth of rice plants. Five of these eight isolates were also field tested in rice plants subjected to different nitrogen fertilization rates.


The results showed that the condition of half-fertilization plus separate inoculation with the isolates AC32 (Herbaspirillum sp.), AG15 (Burkholderia sp.), CA21 (Pseudacidovorax sp.), and UR51 (Azospirillum sp.) achieved rice growth similar to those achieved by full-fertilization without inoculation, thus highlighting the potential of these strains for formulating new bioinoculants for rice crops.




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