Metagenomic analysis of the rhizosphere soil microbiome with respect to phytic acid utilization.
ABSTRACT: While phytic acid is a major form of organic phosphate in many soils, plant utilization of phytic acid is normally limited; however, culture trials of Lotus japonicus using experimental field soil that had been managed without phosphate fertilizer for over 90 years showed significant usage of phytic acid applied to soil for growth and flowering and differences in the degree of growth, even in the same culture pot. To understand the key metabolic processes involved in soil phytic acid utilization, we analyzed rhizosphere soil microbial communities using molecular ecological approaches. Although molecular fingerprint analysis revealed changes in the rhizosphere soil microbial communities from bulk soil microbial community, no clear relationship between the microbiome composition and flowering status that might be related to phytic acid utilization of L. japonicus could be determined. However, metagenomic analysis revealed changes in the relative abundance of the classes Bacteroidetes, Betaproteobacteria, Chlorobi, Dehalococcoidetes and Methanobacteria, which include strains that potentially promote plant growth and phytic acid utilization, and some gene clusters relating to phytic acid utilization, such as alkaline phosphatase and citrate synthase, with the phytic acid utilization status of the plant. This study highlights phylogenetic and metabolic features of the microbial community of the L. japonicus rhizosphere and provides a basic understanding of how rhizosphere microbial communities affect the phytic acid status in soil.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Plant phenology has crucial biological, physical, and chemical effects on the biosphere. Phenological drivers have largely been studied, but the role of plant microbiota, particularly rhizosphere microbiota, has not been considered. RESULTS:We discovered that rhizosphere microbial communities could modulate the timing of flowering of Arabidopsis thaliana. Rhizosphere microorganisms that increased and prolonged N bioavailability by nitrification delayed flowering by converting tryptophan to the phytohormone indole acetic acid (IAA), thus downregulating genes that trigger flowering, and stimulating further plant growth. The addition of IAA to hydroponic cultures confirmed this metabolic network. CONCLUSIONS:We document a novel metabolic network in which soil microbiota influenced plant flowering time, thus shedding light on the key role of soil microbiota on plant functioning. This opens up multiple opportunities for application, from helping to mitigate some of the effects of climate change and environmental stress on plants (e.g. abnormal temperature variation, drought, salinity) to manipulating plant characteristics using microbial inocula to increase crop potential.
Project description:Conservation tillage is an extensively used agricultural practice in northern China that alters soil texture and nutrient conditions, causing changes in the soil microbial community. However, how conservation tillage affects rhizosphere and bulk soil fungal communities during plant growth remains unclear. The present study investigated the effect of long-term (6 years) conservation (chisel plow, zero) and conventional (plow) tillage during wheat growth on the rhizosphere fungal community, using high-throughput sequencing of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) gene and quantitative PCR. During tillering, fungal alpha diversity in both rhizosphere and bulk soil were significantly higher under zero tillage compared to other methods. Although tillage had no significant effect during the flowering stage, fungal alpha diversity at this stage was significantly different between rhizosphere and bulk soils, with bulk soil presenting the highest diversity. This was also reflected in the phylogenetic structure of the communities, as rhizosphere soil communities underwent a greater shift from tillering to flowering compared to bulk soil communities. In general, less variation in community structure was observed under zero tillage compared to plow and chisel plow treatments. Changes in the relative abundance of the fungal orders Capnodiales, Pleosporales, and Xylariales contributed the highest to the dissimilarities observed. Structural equation models revealed that the soil fungal communities under the three tillage regimes were likely influenced by the changes in soil properties associated with plant growth. This study suggested that: (1) differences in nutrient resources between rhizosphere and bulk soils can select for different types of fungi thereby increasing community variation during plant growth; (2) tillage can alter fungal communities' variability, with zero tillage promoting more stable communities. This work suggests that long-term changes in tillage regimes may result in unique soil fungal ecology, which might influence other aspects of soil functioning (e.g., decomposition).
Project description:Interactions between plants and microbes can affect ecosystem functions, and many studies have demonstrated that plant properties influence mutualistic microorganisms. Here, high-throughput sequencing was used to investigate rhizosphere and phyllosphere fungal communities during different plant development stages. Results demonstrated that phyllosphere and rhizosphere fungal community structures were distinct during all developmental stages while they were mediated separately by plant carbon and soil sulfur. Comparatively, the effect of root properties on phyllosphere fungal diversity was greater than soil properties. Moreover, rhizosphere fungal networks of Bothriochloa ischaemum were more complex than phyllosphere fungal networks. This study demonstrated that the effect of plant and soil traits on phyllosphere and rhizosphere fungal communities could potentially be significant, depending on the applicable environmental condition and plant development stage. Although links between phyllosphere and rhizosphere communities have been established, further studies on functional fungal groups during phytoremediation processes are necessary. This study comprehensively analyzed dynamic relationships between phyllosphere and rhizosphere fungal communities during different plant development stages in a polluted environment. These fungal communities were determined to be expedient to the development and utilization of beneficial microbial communities during different development stages, which could more effectively help to stabilize and reclaim contaminated copper tailings soil.
Project description:Copper mining and the byproducts associated with the industry have led to serious pollution in the Loess Plateau of China. There is a potential in improving the ecological restoration efficiency of such degraded land through combining microbial and plant remediation approaches. However, the community structure and function of phyllosphere and rhizosphere microorganisms and their response to plant development in copper tailings dams are poorly understood. This study investigated the impact of the phyllosphere and rhizosphere microbial communities on Bothriochloa ischaemum during three distinct plant development stages: seedling, tiller, and mature. The relative species abundance and Shannon index of bacterial communities of the rhizosphere during the seedling and tiller stages were distinct from that in the mature stage. Dominant bacteria at the level of phyla, such as Proteobacteria, Cyanobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Bacteroidetes, followed distinct patterns associated with plant development in the phyllosphere, but the predominant bacteria were similar in the rhizosphere. Redundancy analysis showed that aboveground total nitrogen and the carbon and nitrogen ratio of this plant species significantly affected phyllosphere bacterial community structure, whereas soil water content, soil nutrients, electrical conductivity, and salinity significantly affected rhizosphere bacterial community structure. Moreover, keystone phyllosphere and rhizosphere bacterial species differed significantly. This study sheds new light on understanding the dynamic relationship of phyllosphere and rhizosphere bacterial communities during plant development in copper tailings. These results are beneficial to the development and utilization of beneficial microbial communities at different stages of development, which might help to reclaim and stabilize tailings more effectively.
Project description:Maize represents one of the main cultivar for food and energy and crop yields are influenced by soil physicochemical and climatic conditions. To study how maize plants influence soil microbes we have examined microbial communities that colonize maize plants grown in carbonate-rich soil (pH 8.5) using culture-independent, PCR-based methods. We observed a low proportion of unclassified bacteria in this soil whether it was planted or unplanted. Our results indicate that a higher complexity of the bacterial community is present in bulk soil with microbes from nine phyla, while in the rhizosphere microbes from only six phyla were found. The predominant microbes in bulk soil were bacteria of the phyla Acidobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria, while Gammaproteobacteria of the genera Pseudomonas and Lysobacter were the predominant in the rhizosphere. As Gammaproteobacteria respond chemotactically to exudates and are efficient in the utilization of plants exudate products, microbial communities associated to the rhizosphere seem to be plant-driven. It should be noted that Gammaproteobacteria made available inorganic nutrients to the plants favouring plant growth and then the benefit of the interaction is common.
Project description:The increased worldwide commercial cultivation of transgenic crops during the past 20 years is accompanied with potential effects on the soil microbial communities, because many rhizosphere and endosphere bacteria play important roles in promoting plant health and growth. Previous studies reported that transgenic plants exert differential effects on soil microbial communities, especially rhizobacteria. Thus, this study compared the soybean root-associated bacterial communities between a 5-enolpyruvylshikimate-3-phosphate synthase -transgenic soybean line (ZUTS31 or simply Z31) and its recipient cultivar (Huachun3 or simply HC3) at the vegetative, flowering, and seed-filling stages. High-throughput sequencing of 16S rRNA gene (16S rDNA) V4 hypervariable region amplicons via Illumina MiSeq and real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) were performed. Our results revealed no significant differences in the overall alpha diversity of root-associated bacterial communities at the three developmental stages and in the beta diversity of root-associated bacterial communities at the flowering stage between Z31 and HC3 under field growth. However, significant differences in the beta diversity of rhizosphere bacterial communities were found at the vegetative and seed-filling stages between the two groups. Furthermore, the results of next generation sequencing and qPCR showed that the relative abundances of root-associated main nitrogen-fixing bacterial genera, especially Bradyrhizobium in the roots, evidently changed from the flowering stage to the seed-filling stage. In conclusion, Z31 exerts transitory effects on the taxonomic diversity of rhizosphere bacterial communities at the vegetative and seed-filling stages compared to the control under field conditions. In addition, soybean developmental change evidently influences the main symbiotic nitrogen-fixing bacterial genera in the roots from the flowering stage to the seed-filling stage.
Project description:Agricultural management practices affect bulk soil microbial communities and the functions they carry out, but it remains unclear how these effects extend to the rhizosphere in different agroecosystem contexts. Given close linkages between rhizosphere processes and plant nutrition and productivity, understanding how management practices impact this critical zone is of great importance to optimize plant-soil interactions for agricultural sustainability. A comparison of six paired conventional-organic processing tomato farms was conducted to investigate relationships between management, soil physicochemical parameters, and rhizosphere microbial community composition and functions. Organically managed fields were higher in soil total N and NO3-N, total and labile C, plant Ca, S, and Cu, and other essential nutrients, while soil pH was higher in conventionally managed fields. Differential abundance, indicator species, and random forest analyses of rhizosphere communities revealed compositional differences between organic and conventional systems and identified management-specific microbial taxa. Phylogeny-based trait prediction showed that these differences translated into more abundant pathogenesis-related gene functions in conventional systems. Structural equation modeling revealed a greater effect of soil biological communities than physicochemical parameters on plant outcomes. These results highlight the importance of rhizosphere-specific studies, as plant selection likely interacts with management in regulating microbial communities and functions that impact agricultural productivity.IMPORTANCE Agriculture relies, in part, on close linkages between plants and the microorganisms that live in association with plant roots. These rhizosphere bacteria and fungi are distinct from microbial communities found in the rest of the soil and are even more important to plant nutrient uptake and health. Evidence from field studies shows that agricultural management practices such as fertilization and tillage shape microbial communities in bulk soil, but little is known about how these practices affect the rhizosphere. We investigated how agricultural management affects plant-soil-microbe interactions by comparing soil physical and chemical properties, plant nutrients, and rhizosphere microbial communities from paired fields under organic and conventional management. Our results show that human management effects extend even to microorganisms living in close association with plant roots and highlight the importance of these bacteria and fungi to crop nutrition and productivity.
Project description:Rhizosphere microbial communities are critically important for soil nitrogen cycling and plant productivity. There is evidence that plant species and genotypes select distinct rhizosphere communities, however, knowledge of the drivers and extent of this variation remains limited. We grew 11 annual species and 11 maize (Zea mays subsp. mays) inbred lines in a common garden experiment to assess the influence of host phylogeny, growth, and nitrogen metabolism on rhizosphere communities. Growth characteristics, bacterial community composition and potential activity of extracellular enzymes were assayed at time of flowering, when plant nitrogen demand is maximal. Bacterial community composition varied significantly between different plant species and genotypes. Rhizosphere beta-diversity was positively correlated with phylogenetic distance between plant species, but not genetic distance within a plant species. In particular, life history traits associated with plant resource acquisition (e.g., longer lifespan, high nitrogen use efficiency, and larger seed size) were correlated with variation in bacterial community composition and enzyme activity. These results indicate that plant evolutionary history and life history strategy influence rhizosphere bacterial community composition and activity. Thus, incorporating phylogenetic or functional diversity into crop rotations may be a tool to manipulate plant-microbe interactions in agricultural systems.
Project description:The diversity and stability of bacterial communities present in the rhizosphere heavily influence soil and plant quality and ecosystem sustainability. The goal of this study is to understand how 'Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus' (known to cause Huanglongbing, HLB) influences the structure and functional potential of microbial communities associated with the citrus rhizosphere. Clone library sequencing and taxon/group-specific quantitative real-time PCR results showed that 'Ca. L. asiaticus' infection restructured the native microbial community associated with citrus rhizosphere. Within the bacterial community, phylum Proteobacteria with various genera typically known as successful rhizosphere colonizers were significantly greater in clone libraries from healthy samples, whereas phylum Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and Firmicutes, typically more dominant in the bulk soil were higher in 'Ca. L. asiaticus'-infected samples. A comprehensive functional microarray GeoChip 3.0 was used to determine the effects of 'Ca. L. asiaticus' infection on the functional diversity of rhizosphere microbial communities. GeoChip analysis showed that HLB disease has significant effects on various functional guilds of bacteria. Many genes involved in key ecological processes such as nitrogen cycling, carbon fixation, phosphorus utilization, metal homeostasis and resistance were significantly greater in healthy than in the 'Ca. L. asiaticus'-infected citrus rhizosphere. Our results showed that the microbial community of the 'Ca. L. asiaticus'-infected citrus rhizosphere has shifted away from using more easily degraded sources of carbon to the more recalcitrant forms. Overall, our study provides evidence that the change in plant physiology mediated by 'Ca. L. asiaticus' infection could elicit shifts in the composition and functional potential of rhizosphere microbial communities. In the long term, these fluctuations might have important implications for the productivity and sustainability of citrus-producing agro-ecosystems.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.), an important oilseed and food legume, is widely cultivated in the semi-arid tropics. Drought is the major stress in this region which limits productivity. Microbial communities in the rhizosphere are of special importance to stress tolerance. However, relatively little is known about the relationship between drought and microbial communities in peanuts. METHOD:In this study, deep sequencing of the V3-V4 region of the 16S rRNA gene was performed to characterize the microbial community structure of drought-treated and untreated peanuts. RESULTS:Taxonomic analysis showed that Actinobacteria, Proteobacteria, Saccharibacteria, Chloroflexi, Acidobacteria and Cyanobacteria were the dominant phyla in the peanut rhizosphere. Comparisons of microbial community structure of peanuts revealed that the relative abundance of Actinobacteria and Acidobacteria dramatically increased in the seedling and podding stages in drought-treated soil, while that of Cyanobacteria and Gemmatimonadetes increased in the flowering stage in drought-treated rhizospheres. Metagenomic profiling indicated that sequences related to metabolism, signaling transduction, defense mechanism and basic vital activity were enriched in the drought-treated rhizosphere, which may have implications for plant survival and drought tolerance. CONCLUSION:This microbial communities study will form the foundation for future improvement of drought tolerance of peanuts via modification of the soil microbes.