Streptomyces is a genus of soil dwelling actinomycetes that play an important role in plant health through association with plant roots. They provide an array of benefits to the plant host such as infectious disease prevention and plant growth promotion. We investigate the role of nitric oxide (NO), a ubiquitous signalling molecule used by plants and bacteria alike, in root colonisation by Streptomyces coelicolor. Plating studies were conducted for Arabidopsis thaliana and Triticum aestivum. Relative colonisation was determined by comparing selective recovery of marked mutant strains, alongside a marked control. The effect of increased endogenous NO was interrogated with a deletion mutant of nsrR-hmpA – genes responsible for NO detoxification in Streptomyces. Strains were also engineered to express recombinant NO synthase genes, to investigate the impact of NO production by the bacteria. We show that S. coelicolor ΔnsrR-hmpA is significantly more competent at colonising T. aestivum rhizosphere compared to the control (P<0.005). Endosphere colonisation is sporadic for both mutant and control, this observation is supported by fCLSM imaging. Preliminary data indicates that the Streptomyces strains engineered to express NO synthase at high levels, colonise poorly. This suggests that NO is a dynamic and finely tuned signalling molecule. We are excited to present promising new evidence to support an as yet undescribed link between NO and plant root colonisation by Streptomyces coelicolor. Understanding the mechanisms that underpin this process is the first step in exploiting these interactions for agricultural technology.

  • This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Most cited this month Most Cited RSS feed

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error