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      Antifungal Activity of Bacillus Species Against Fusarium and Analysis of the Potential Mechanisms Used in Biocontrol

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          Fusarium is a complex genus of ascomycete fungi that consists of plant pathogens of agricultural relevance. Controlling Fusarium infection in crops that leads to substantial yield losses is challenging. These economic losses along with environmental and human health concerns over the usage of chemicals in attaining disease control are shifting focus toward the use of biocontrol agents for effective control of phytopathogenic Fusarium spp. In the present study, an analysis of the plant-growth promoting (PGP) and biocontrol attributes of four bacilli ( Bacillus simplex 30N-5, B. simplex 11, B. simplex 237, and B. subtilis 30VD-1) has been conducted. The production of cellulase, xylanase, pectinase, and chitinase in functional assays was studied, followed by in silico gene analysis of the PGP-related and biocontrol-associated genes. Of all the bacilli included in this study, B. subtilis 30VD-1 (30VD-1) demonstrated the most effective antagonism against Fusarium spp. under in vitro conditions. Additionally, 100 μg/ml of the crude 1-butanol extract of 30VD-1’s cell-free culture filtrate caused about 40% inhibition in radial growth of Fusarium spp. Pea seed bacterization with 30VD-1 led to considerable reduction in wilt severity in plants with about 35% increase in dry plant biomass over uninoculated plants growing in Fusarium-infested soil. Phase contrast microscopy demonstrated distortions and abnormal swellings in F. oxysporum hyphae on co-culturing with 30VD-1. The results suggest a multivariate mode of antagonism of 30VD-1 against phytopathogenic Fusarium spp., by producing chitinase, volatiles, and other antifungal molecules, the characterization of which is underway.

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          Use of Congo red-polysaccharide interactions in enumeration and characterization of cellulolytic bacteria from the bovine rumen.

          The interaction of the direct dye Congo red with intact beta-D-glucans provides the basis for a rapid and sensitive assay system for bacterial strains possessing beta-(1 leads to 4),(1 leads to 3)-D-glucanohydrolase, beta-(1 leads to 4)-D-glucanohydrolase, and beta-(1 leads to 3)-D-glucanohydrolase activities. A close correspondence was observed between cellulolytic activity and beta-(1 leads to 4)-D-glucanohydrolase and beta-(1 leads to 4),(1 leads to 3)-D-glucanohydrolase activities in isolates from the bovine rumen. Many of these isolates also possessed beta-(1 leads to 3)-D-glucanohydrolase activity, and this characteristic may have taxonomic significance.
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            GC-MS SPME profiling of rhizobacterial volatiles reveals prospective inducers of growth promotion and induced systemic resistance in plants.

            Chemical and plant growth studies of Bacilli strains GB03 and IN937a revealed that the volatile components 2,3-butanediol and acetoin trigger plant growth promotion in Arabidopsis. Differences in growth promotion when cytokinin-signaling mutants are exposed to GB03 versus IN937a volatiles suggest a divergence in chemical signaling for these two bacterial strains. To provide a comprehensive chemical profile of bacterial volatiles emitted from these biologically active strains, headspace solid phase microextraction (SPME) coupled with software extraction of overlapping GC-separated components was employed. Ten volatile metabolites already reported from GB03 and IN937a were identified as well as 28 compounds not previously characterized. Most of the newly identified compounds were branched-chain alcohols released from IN937a, at much higher levels than in GB03. Principal component analysis clearly separated GB03 from IN937a, with GB03 producing higher amounts of 3-methyl-1-butanol, 2-methyl-1-butanol and butane-1-methoxy-3-methyl. The branched-chain alcohols share a similar functional motif to that of 2,3-butanediol and may afford alternative structural patterns for elicitors from bacterial sources.
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              RESISTANCE TO FUSARIUM OXYSPORUM 1, a dominant Arabidopsis disease-resistance gene, is not race specific.

              Arabidopsis thaliana ecotypes differ in their susceptibility to Fusarium wilt diseases. Ecotype Taynuilt-0 (Ty-0) is susceptible to Fusarium oxysporum forma specialis (f.) matthioli whereas Columbia-0 (Col-0) is resistant. Segregation analysis of a cross between Ty-0 and Col-0 revealed six dominant RESISTANCE TO FUSARIUM OXYSPORUM (RFO) loci that significantly contribute to f. matthioli resistance in Col-0 relative to Ty-0. We refer to the locus with the strongest effect as RFO1. Ty-0 plants in which only the Col-0 allele of RFO1 (RFO1(Col-0)) was introduced were resistant to f. matthioli. Surprisingly, RFO1(Col-0) also conferred resistance to f. raphani, demonstrating that RFO1-mediated resistance is not race specific. Expression of resistance by RFO2, RFO4, or RFO6 was dependent on RFO1(Col-0). Map-based cloning of RFO1(Col-0) showed that RFO1 is identical to the previously named Arabidopsis gene WAKL22 (WALL-ASSOCIATED KINASE-LIKE KINASE 22), which encodes a receptor-like kinase that does not contain an extracellular leucine-rich repeat domain. Consistent with these results, a Col-0 rfo1 loss-of-function mutant was more susceptible to f. matthioli, f. conglutinans, and f. raphani. Thus, RFO1 encodes a novel type of dominant disease-resistance protein that confers resistance to a broad spectrum of Fusarium races.

                Author and article information

                Front Microbiol
                Front Microbiol
                Front. Microbiol.
                Frontiers in Microbiology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                02 October 2018
                : 9
                1Departments of Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology, University of California, Los Angeles , Los Angeles, CA, United States
                2Center for Education Innovation and Learning in the Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles , Los Angeles, CA, United States
                3Department of Environmental Hydrology and Microbiology, Zuckerberg Institute for Water Research, Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev , Beersheba, Israel
                4Molecular Biology Institute, University of California, Los Angeles , Los Angeles, CA, United States
                Author notes

                Edited by: Sharon Lafferty Doty, University of Washington, United States

                Reviewed by: Giuseppe Spano, University of Foggia, Italy; Susanne Zeilinger, Universität Innsbruck, Austria

                *Correspondence: Ann M. Hirsch, ahirsch@

                These authors have contributed equally to this work as first authors

                Present address: Pilar Martínez-Hidalgo, Departamento de Microbiología y Genética, Universidad de Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain Najmeh Nejat, Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology and Plant Pathology, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS, United States

                This article was submitted to Microbial Symbioses, a section of the journal Frontiers in Microbiology

                Copyright © 2018 Khan, Martínez-Hidalgo, Ice, Maymon, Humm, Nejat, Sanders, Kaplan and Hirsch.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 2, Equations: 0, References: 57, Pages: 12, Words: 0
                Funded by: National Science Foundation 10.13039/100000001
                Award ID: 1201735
                Funded by: U.S. Department of Energy 10.13039/100000015
                Award ID: DE-AC02-05CH11231
                Original Research


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