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Abstract

Assessing the risk of biological control agents on the indigenous microbial communities: Serratia plymuthicaHRO-C48 and Streptomyces sp. HRO-71 as model bacteria.

The phytopathogenic fungus Verticillium dahliae Kleb. causes high yield losses in strawberry production. As effective chemical control of this fungus is no longer available, biological control based on natural antagonists might provide new control strategies. The aim of this study was to assess the impact of the two biological control agents S. plymuthica HRO-C48 and Streptomyces sp. HRO-71 on the rhizosphere community of the Verticillium host plant strawberry in field trials at two different sites in Germany. Therefore, we determined the abundances of culturable bacteria and investigated the community structure of the total rhizosphere microbiota by PCR-single strand conformation polymorphism analysis of the 16S rRNA and fungal ITS1 region. The abundances of culturable rhizobacteria on R2A medium as well as the proportion of in vitro Verticillium antagonists did not differ significantly. Additionally, no treatment specific differences were obtained in the composition of species of the non-target antagonistic bacteria in the rhizospheres. The culture-independent analysis revealed only transient differences between the bacterial communities not due to the treatments rather than to the plant growth stage. Fungal and bacterial community fingerprints showed the development of a microbiota, specific for a field site. However, no sustainable impact of the bacterial treatments on the indigenous microbial communities was found using culture-dependent and -independent methods.



Scherwinski, K.; Wolf, A.; Berg, G. 2007. Assessing the risk of biological control agents on the indigenous microbial communities: Serratia plymuthicaHRO-C48 and Streptomyces sp. HRO-71 as model bacteria. Biocontrol 52 (1), 87-112.