SUMMARY: Production of exopolysaccharides by has been linked with efficient invasion and nodulation of leguminous plant roots by the bacteria. Exopolysaccharide-deficient () mutants of USDA 191 were isolated following Tn-insertion mutagenesis. Five phenotypically unique mutants were investigated for exopolysaccharide synthesis and their ability to nodulate soybeans. The exopolysaccharides produced by these mutants were analysed for polysaccharide composition by column chromatography and thin-layer chromatography. Two mutants designated - and - were deficient in both neutral glucan and exopolysaccharide synthesis, but each induced some functional nodules on (Peking). The remaining three mutants (-, - and -) synthesized neutral glucans at levels higher or lower than those in the wild-type and exhibited partial exopolysaccharide deficiencies. The data imply that neither exopolysaccharides nor neutral glucans are essential for the induction of determinate nodules by


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