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Effects of long-term chlorimuron-ethyl application on the diversity and antifungal activity of soil Pseudomonas spp. in a soybean field in Northeast China

Wang, Jingjing, Zhang, Huiwen, Zhang, Xiaoli, Qin, Shenghong, Tan, Huanbo, Li, Xinyu
Annals of microbiology 2013 v.63 no.1 pp. 335-341
Fusarium graminearum, Fusarium oxysporum, Pseudomonas, Thanatephorus cucumeris, adverse effects, agricultural land, antifungal properties, case studies, chitinase, chlorimuron ethyl, continuous cropping, crop production, endo-1,4-beta-glucanase, hydrogen cyanide, in vitro studies, long term effects, metabolites, pathogens, polygalacturonase, root rot, siderophores, soil, soil microorganisms, soil sampling, soybeans, weed control, China
The herbicide chlorimuron-ethyl has been applied widely for weed control in farmland, especially in soybean fields in China over the past decade, but the chronic effects of this herbicide on soil microorganisms, particularly Pseudomonas spp., is not well understood. Taking a continuously cropped soybean field in the town of Fuyuan—a soybean production base of Heilongjiang Province in Northeast China—as a case study, soil samples were collected from plots having received 0-, 5-, and 10-year applications of chlorimuron-ethyl (30 g active component of chlorimuron-ethyl/ha/year) to study the abundance and diversity of Pseudomonas spp. Meanwhile, an in vitro assay was used to examine the antifungal activities of isolated Pseudomonas spp. against soil-borne pathogens (Fusarium graminearum, Fusarium oxysporum, and Rhizoctonia solani) causing soybean root rot disease. The production of siderophore, hydrogen cyanide (HCN), and lytic enzymes (cellulase, pectinase, and chitinase) by Pseudomonas spp. was also investigated. With 5- and 10- year chlorimuron-ethyl application, the numbers of soil Pseudomonas spp. decreased from 121 × 10² CFU/g dry soil in the control to 40 × 10² CFU/g dry soil and 13 × 10² CFU/g dry soil, and the Shannon index values decreased from 6.23 to 3.71 and 1.73, respectively. The numbers of antifungal Pseudomonas spp. also decreased, and the proportions of Pseudomonas spp. with antifungal activities against the different test pathogens altered. All the antifungal Pseudomonas spp. could produce siderophore and HCN but not lytic enzymes. The results suggest that long-term application of chlorimuron-ethyl in continuously cropped soybean field had negative effects on the abundance and diversity of soil Pseudomonas spp., including species with different antifungal activities against pathogens. Siderophore and HCN rather than lytic enzymes formed the antifungal metabolites of Pseudomonas spp., and the number of antifungal Pseudomonas that can produce siderophore and HCN decreased markedly under application of chlorimuron-ethyl, especially after 10-year application.