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Curr Microbiol. 1998 Nov;37(5):301-5.

Rhizobacterial glutathione levels as affected by starvation and cadmium exposure.

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Department of Horticulture, Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences, Box 55, SE-230 53 Alnarp, Sweden.


The rhizosphere is a continuously fluctuating environment in which severe stresses are put on its inhabitants, and glutathione, a reducing tripeptide, and related compounds probably have important roles in cellular protection. In the present study the metabolism of glutathione was examined in rhizobacteria subjected to stress. The plant-growth-promoting rhizobacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens 5.014 and its mutant 5-2/4 were exposed to starvation, either by resuspension or exhaustion, and to cadmium. Glutathione levels, cell protein, and viable count were determined and compared in different conditions. Both starvation and cadmium exposure decreased the amount of glutathione in the cell. No changes of the glutathione concentration in the medium were observed with or without the presence of rhizobacteria, indicating that there was no transport over the cell membrane. The glutathione levels within the rhizobacteria may give valuable information on how different stresses affect the bacteria. In this study, the involvement of glutathione in the increased stress resistance earlier observed in nutrient-starved P. fluorescens was not supported. The concentration of bacterial glutathione is suggested as a possible marker for rhizosphere competence, which, however, needs to be further evaluated with several strains of rhizobacteria.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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