Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genome Study Of Beneficial Microbe May Help Boost Plant Health

Date:
June 28, 2005
Source:
The Institute for Genomic Research
Summary:

ROCKVILLE, Md - In a study expected to greatly benefit crop plants, scientists have deciphered the genome of a root- and seed-dwelling bacterium that protects plants from diseases.

The research provides clues to better explain how the helpful microbe, Pseudomonas fluorescens Pf-5, naturally safeguards roots and seeds from infection by harmful microbes that cause plant diseases. The genome paper will be published in Nature Biotechnology and was scheduled to be posted online on June 26.

"The genome sequence has helped us identify new chemical pathways that the microbe apparently uses to create what are known as 'secondary metabolites' -- possibly including new antibiotic compounds," says Ian Paulsen. He led the sequencing at The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR), Rockville, Md., and is the study's first author.

The use of naturally-occurring, beneficial microbes such as P. fluorescens to control plant pathogens is called "biological control." That method is gaining momentum as a way to grow healthy plants without using synthetic fungicides. In all, about three dozen beneficial microbes are currently used as an environmentally-friendly way to fight plant diseases.

Joyce E. Loper, senior author of the genome paper and an expert on P. fluorescens Pf-5, predicts that the new genomic data will help scientists more quickly develop new ways to boost the effectiveness of beneficial microbes in fighting plant diseases.

"This genomic sequence reveals previously unknown traits of P. fluorescens that increase its potential for biological control," says Loper. She is a plant pathologist with USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and is based at Oregon State University, Corvallis. The P. fluorescens genome was sequenced at TIGR and analyzed by scientists there and at ARS and Oregon State University, with contributions by researchers at Rutgers, Washington State University and the University of Arizona. The project was funded by a grant from the USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service.

The article in Nature Biotechnology presents the first complete genome sequence of a biological control agent for combating plant diseases.

P. fluorescens Pf-5 was discovered two decades ago by Charles R. Howell, a plant pathologist with the ARS in Texas, who showed that the microbe suppressed two major cotton diseases. Since then, plant pathologists around the world have used this strain as a laboratory model to study beneficial microbes.

Paulsen says the P. fluorescens project also pioneered a new methodology. This novel approach relies on the analysis of repeated regions of the DNA sequence to help identify segments of the genome that appear to have been transferred from other microbes or viruses, known as phages, that infect bacteria.

Says Paulsen: "We found exciting evidence that P. fluorescens may have acquired new clusters of genes, called genomic islands, by means of lateral transfer from phages or other microbes."

###

The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) is a not-for-profit research institute based in Rockville, Maryland. TIGR, which sequenced the first complete genome of a free-living organism in 1995, has been at the forefront of the genomic revolution since the institute was founded in 1992. TIGR conducts research involving the structural, functional, and comparative analysis of genomes and gene products in viruses, bacteria, archaea, and eukaryotes.

As the principal in-house research arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) conducts research to develop and transfer solutions to agricultural problems of high national priority and provides information access and dissemination to ensure high-quality, safe food and other agricultural products, assess the nutritional needs of Americans, sustain a competitive agricultural economy, enhance the natural resource base and the environment, and provide economic opportunities for rural citizens, communities, and society as a whole.

Oregon State University is known nationally and internationally for the quality of its academic programs, its research excellence and its service and outreach. OSU is one of only two universities in the nation that are designated land grant, sea grant, space grant and sun grant institutions.



Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Institute for Genomic Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Institute for Genomic Research. "Genome Study Of Beneficial Microbe May Help Boost Plant Health." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 June 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050627061630.htm>.
The Institute for Genomic Research. (2005, June 28). Genome Study Of Beneficial Microbe May Help Boost Plant Health. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050627061630.htm
The Institute for Genomic Research. "Genome Study Of Beneficial Microbe May Help Boost Plant Health." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050627061630.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

AP (Sep. 20, 2014) The San Diego Zoo has welcomed two Cheetah cubs to its Safari Park. The nearly three-week-old female cubs are being hand fed and are receiving around the clock care. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) Considered a "national heritage" in Belgium, chocolate now has a new museum in Brussels. In a former chocolate factory, visitors to the permanent exhibition spaces, workshops and tastings can discover derivatives of the cocoa bean. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins