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Open AccessArticle

Plant Tissue Localization and Morphological Conversion of Azospirillum brasilense upon Initial Interaction with Allium cepa L.

1
Department of Life and Food Science, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Inada-cho, Obihiro, Hokkaido 080-8555, Japan
2
United Graduate School of Agricultural Science, Iwate University, 18-8 Ueda-sanchome, Morioka, Iwate 020-8550, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Microorganisms 2019, 7(9), 275; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms7090275
Received: 27 June 2019 / Revised: 20 August 2019 / Accepted: 20 August 2019 / Published: 21 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Macro and Microorganism Interactions)
The genus Azospirillum is recognized as plant growth-promoting bacteria that exert beneficial effects on the host plant and is morphologically converted into cyst-like cells (i.e., c-form) in association with poly-β-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) accumulation in the cells under stress conditions. We constructed Azospirillum brasilense, labeled with reporter genes (gus/gfp, mCherry) and examined the plant tissue localization along with a morphological conversion into the c-form upon its initial interaction with onion seedlings (Allium cepa L.). The PHB granules in the A. brasilense cells were easily detected under fluorescence as “black holes”, rendering it possible to monitor the morphological conversion from vegetative to the c-form cells. The results showed that the A. brasilense cells on the surface of the roots and bulbs (underground stem) began converting at three days following inoculation and that the cell conversion was significantly advanced with time along with the cell population increase. The endophytic infection of A. brasilense into the bulb tissues was also confirmed, although these likely constituted vegetative cells. Moreover, the morphological conversion into the c-form was induced under nitrogen-restricted conditions. Analysis of the biochemical properties of the A. brasilense cells during cell conversion revealed that the acetylene reduction activity correlated positively with the PHB accumulation in the cells converting into the c-form under nitrogen-restricted conditions. View Full-Text
Keywords: Azospirillum brasilense; Allium cepa L.; plant tissue localization; morphological conversion; c-form Azospirillum brasilense; Allium cepa L.; plant tissue localization; morphological conversion; c-form
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Hong, L.; Orikasa, Y.; Sakamoto, H.; Ohwada, T. Plant Tissue Localization and Morphological Conversion of Azospirillum brasilense upon Initial Interaction with Allium cepa L.. Microorganisms 2019, 7, 275.

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