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Bioresour Technol. 2003 Jan;86(1):7-13.

Impact of long-term application of industrial wastewater on the emergence of resistance traits in Azotobacter chroococcum isolated from rhizospheric soil.

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Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Microbiology, Aligarh Muslim University, India.


A total of 57 (36 and 21) Azotobacter chroococcum were isolated from wheat (Triticum aestivum) rhizospheric soil irrigated with industrial wastewater (about a decade) and ground water (uncontaminated) and characterized on the basis of morphological, cultural and biochemical characteristics. Rhizospheric soils were analyzed for metal concentrations by atomic absorption spectrophotometery and the test soil samples were contaminated with Fe, Zn, Cu, Cr, Ni and Pb. All the isolates of A. chroococcum were tested for their resistance against Hg2+, Cd2+, Cu2+, Cr3+, Cr6+, Zn2+, Ni2+ and Pb2+. Among 36 isolates of Azotobacter from soil irrigated with industrial wastewater, 94.4% were resistant to Pb2+ and Hg2+ and 86.1%, 77.5% and 63.8% were resistant to Zn2+, Cr6+ and Cr3+ respectively. The highest minimum inhibitory concentration of 200 microg/ml for Hg2+ and 1600 microg/ml for other metals were observed against these bacteria from soil. The incidences of metal resistance and MICs of metals for A. chroococcum from wastewater irrigated soil were significantly different to those of uncontaminated soil. All A. chroococcum isolates were tested for their resistance against 11 commonly used antibiotics/drugs. 91.6% were found to be resistant against nitrofurantoin while 86.4% and 80.5% were found to be resistant against polymyxin-B and co-trimoxazole respectively. Agarose gel electrophoresis using the miniprep method for plasmid isolation revealed that these isolates harboured plasmids of molecular weights 58.8 and 64.5 kb using EcoRI and HindIII digests of X DNA and undigested X DNA as standard markers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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