Root colonization of faba bean (Vicia faba L.) and pea (Pisum sativum L.) by Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. viciae in the presence of nitrate-nitrogen
Beauchamp, C.J.; Kloepper, J.W.; Shaw, J.J.; Chalifour, F.P.
Canadian Journal of Microbiology 47(12): 1068-1074
There is a lack of knowledge concerning the effect of nitrate-nitrogen (NO3(-)-N) at levels known to inhibit nodule formation and functioning on root colonization of dinitrogen-fixing legumes. Firstly, this study investigated potential differences between Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. viciae 175F9 and its bioluminescent-labeled strain 175F9.lux on root colonization of faba bean (Vicia faba L.) and pea (Pisum sativum L.). These two strains similarly colonized the roots of both hosts. Secondly, this study evaluated the effects of 0 and 10 mol x m(-3) NO3(-)-N on root colonization of faba bean and pea by strain 175F9.lux, over time. Averaged over both hosts and harvest dates, the presence of NO3(-)-N increased the rhizobial population and the root length colonized. In addition, our results showed that bioluminescence activity increased from 7 to 14 days after sowing and was not correlated to rhizobial population. Finally, to demonstrate that an increase in bioluminescence activity was not an indirect effect of nitrate on R. leguminosarum bv. viciae 175F9.lux, this study investigated the effects of increasing carbon (mannitol) and nitrogen (NO3(-)-N) concentrations on the rhizobial population and bioluminescence activity. The carbon source was more important than the nitrogen source to increase the rhizobial population and bioluminescence activity, which increased with increasing mannitol concentration, but not with increasing nitrate concentration. Results from this study demonstrated that NO3(-)-N increased rhizobial population, especially for faba bean, and the length of root colonized.