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Rhizobacteria that produce auxins and contain 1-amino-cyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid deaminase decrease amino acid concentrations in the rhizosphere and improve growth and yield of well-watered and water-limited potato (Solanum tuberosum)

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>07/2015
<mark>Journal</mark>Annals of Applied Biology
Issue number1
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)11-25
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date29/01/15
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Plant-growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) utilise amino acids exuded from plant root systems, but hitherto there have been no direct measurements of rhizosphere concentrations of the amino acid 1-amino-cyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) following inoculation with PGPR containing the enzyme ACC deaminase. When introduced to the rhizosphere of two potato (Solanum tuberosum) cultivars (cv. Swift and cv. Nevsky), various ACC deaminase containing rhizobacteria (Achromobacter xylosoxidans Cm4, Pseudomonas oryzihabitans Ep4 and Variovorax paradoxus5C-2) not only decreased rhizosphere ACC concentrations but also decreased concentrations of several proteinogenic amino acids (glutamic acid, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, phenylalanine, serine, threonine, tryptophan, tyrosine, valine). These effects were not always correlated with the ability of the bacteria to metabolise these compounds in vitro, suggesting bacterial mediation of root amino acid exudation. All rhizobacteria showed similar root colonisation following inoculation of sand cultures, thus species differences in amino acid utilisation profiles apparently did not confer any selective advantage in the potato rhizosphere. Rhizobacterial inoculation increased root biomass (by up to 50%) and tuber yield (by up to 40%) in pot trials, and tuber yield (by up to 27%) in field experiments, especially when plants were grown under water-limited conditions. Nevertheless, inoculated and control plants showed similar leaf water relations, indicating that alternative mechanisms (regulation of phytohormone balance) were responsible for growth promotion. Rhizobacteria generally increased tuber number more than individual tuber weight, suggesting that accelerated vegetative development was responsible for increased yield.