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Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences
Year: 2017  |  Volume: 20  |  Issue: 6  |  Page No.: 278 - 288

Effect of Salicylic Acid on the Growth and Chemical Responses of Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum

Khayalethu Ntushelo    

Abstract: Background and Objective: Salicylic acid is a signal molecule which activates plant defense against plant pathogens such as the soft rot enterobacterium Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum. The objectives of study were to determine bactericidal effects of salicylic acid on the growth of P. carotovorum subsp. carotovorum and secondly, assess chemical responses of P. carotovorum subsp. carotovorum to salicylic acid. Materials and Methods: Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum was grown in lysogeny broth amended with salicylic acid at concentrations of 0, 100, 200, 400, 800 and 1200 mg L–1. The P. carotovorum subsp. carotovorum cultures were incubated at 25°C and sampled at two time points, 0 h (sampled before incubation) and 24 h. Bacterial counts were done at the onset of the incubation (0 h) and after the 24 h incubation. The set which was incubated for 24 h was split into two, one subset was centrifuged and the other was not. From the centrifuged subset the supernatant was recovered and was, together with all the other samples (0 and 24 h not centrifuged), analyzed with1H nuclear magnetic resonance and gas chromatography. Results: Bacterial counts done before and after incubation showed that the lower concentrations of salicylic acid, 0, 100, 200 and 400 mg L–1, supported the growth of P. carotovorum subsp. carotovorum whereas the higher concentrations of 800 and 1200 mg L–1 inhibited the growth of the bacterium completely. Nuclear magnetic resonance results showed either slight or no differences in the metabolite profiles and gas chromatography showed different responses without a clearly defined pattern among the experimental treatments. However, methanethiol was detected by both nuclear magnetic resonance and gas chromatography in all the treatments and was probably formed as a result of the breakdown of lysogeny broth. Conclusion: From the results obtained it was concluded that salicylic acid promotes the growth of P. carotovorum subsp. carotovorum at lower concentrations of 0-400 mg L–1 but higher concentrations of salicylic acid of 800 and 1200 mg L–1 inhibit bacterial growth. All the tested salicylic acid concentrations (0-1200 mg L–1) cause only slight chemical shifts in the bacterial culture. Methanethiol was detected in all treatments and it is probably formed from the breakdown of lysogeny broth.

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