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Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. 2014 Apr;105(4):663-9. doi: 10.1007/s10482-014-0120-9. Epub 2014 Jan 31.

Indole-3-acetic acid producing root-associated bacteria on growth of Brazil Pine (Araucaria angustifolia) and Slash Pine (Pinus elliottii).

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Soil Microbiology Laboratory, Department of Soil Science, Luiz de Queiroz College of Agriculture, University of São Paulo, ESALQ/USP, Av. Pádua Dias, 11, CP 09, Piracicaba, São Paulo, 13418-900, Brazil,


Araucaria forests in Brazil today correspond to only 0.7 % of the original 200 km(2) of natural forest that covered a great part of the southern and southeastern area of the Atlantic Forest and, although Araucaria angustifolia is an endangered species, illegal exploitation is still going on. As an alternative to the use of hardwoods, Pinus elliottii presents rapid growth and high tolerance to climatic stress and low soil fertility or degraded areas. Thus, the objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of IAA-producing bacteria on the development of A. angustifolia and P. elliottii. We used five bacterial strains previously isolated from the rhizosphere of A. angustifolia, which produce quantities of IAA ranging from 3 to 126 μg mL(-1). Microbiolized seeds were sown in a new gnotobiotic system developed for this work, that allowed the quantification of the plant hormone IAA produced by bacteria, and the evaluation of its effect on seedling development. Also, it was shown that P. elliottii roots were almost as satisfactory as hosts for these IAA producers as A. angustifolia, while different magnitudes of mass increases were found for each species. Thus, we suggest that these microbial groups can be helpful for the development and reestablishment of already degraded forests and that PGPR isolated from Araucaria rhizosphere have the potential to be beneficial in seedling production of P. elliottii. Another finding is that our newly developed gnotobiotic system is highly satisfactory for the evaluation of this effect.

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