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Identification of soil bacteria expressing a symbiotic plasmid from Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. trofolii






Canadian Journal of Microbiology 43(2): 164-177

Identification of soil bacteria expressing a symbiotic plasmid from Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. trofolii

A hundred strains of non-nodulating, Gram-negative, rod-shaped bacteria were isolated from clover-ryegrass pastures on three different soil types and from a sandy loam under lupins. When crossed with Escherichia coli PN200 containing the cointegrate plasmid pPN1, 11 transconjugants gained the ability to form nodules on the roots of white clover (Trifolium repens cv. Grasslands Huia). A nodA probe indicated that they had gained nodulation genes. The identities of these 11 strains and 4 others derived from earlier work on non-nodulating root nodule bacteria, were determined by ribotyping, DNA-DNA hybridization, and partial 16S rRNA sequencing. Good agreement was obtained between the three methods, and 11 of the strains were identified as Rhizobium leguminosarum (6), Rhizobium loti (2), Rhizobium etli (1), Rhizobium tropici (1), and Sinorhizobium meliloti (1). DNA-DNA hybridization indicated that the remaining four strains were related to the Rhizobium leguminosarum reference strains. The existence of several species of non-nodulating rhizobia in pasture soil, including species for which the normal host plant was absent, is discussed in relation to the fate of symbiotic plasmids from Rhizobium seed inoculants. It is also suggested that new species should be named for the geographical region from which they are first isolated rather than the host plant.

Accession: 002863771

PMID: 9090106

DOI: 10.1139/m97-022

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