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Does wheat genetically modified for disease resistance affect root-colonizing pseudomonads and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi?


Meyer, Joana Beatrice; Song-Wilson, Yi; Foetzki, Andrea; Luginbühl, Carolin; Winzeler, Michael; Kneubühler, Yvan; Matasci, Caterina; Mascher-Frutschi, Fabio; Kalinina, Olena; Boller, Thomas; Keel, Christoph; Maurhofer, Monika (2013). Does wheat genetically modified for disease resistance affect root-colonizing pseudomonads and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi? PLoS ONE, 8(1):e53825.

Abstract

This study aimed to evaluate the impact of genetically modified (GM) wheat with introduced pm3b mildew resistance transgene, on two types of root-colonizing microorganisms, namely pseudomonads and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). Our investigations were carried out in field trials over three field seasons and at two locations. Serial dilution in selective King's B medium and microscopy were used to assess the abundance of cultivable pseudomonads and AMF, respectively. We developed a denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) method to characterize the diversity of the pqqC gene, which is involved in Pseudomonas phosphate solubilization. A major result was that in the first field season Pseudomonas abundances and diversity on roots of GM pm3b lines, but also on non-GM sister lines were different from those of the parental lines and conventional wheat cultivars. This indicates a strong effect of the procedures by which these plants were created, as GM and sister lines were generated via tissue cultures and propagated in the greenhouse. Moreover, Pseudomonas population sizes and DGGE profiles varied considerably between individual GM lines with different genomic locations of the pm3b transgene. At individual time points, differences in Pseudomonas and AMF accumulation between GM and control lines were detected, but they were not consistent and much less pronounced than differences detected between young and old plants, different conventional wheat cultivars or at different locations and field seasons. Thus, we conclude that impacts of GM wheat on plant-beneficial root-colonizing microorganisms are minor and not of ecological importance. The cultivation-independent pqqC-DGGE approach proved to be a useful tool for monitoring the dynamics of Pseudomonas populations in a wheat field and even sensitive enough for detecting population responses to altered plant physiology.

Abstract

This study aimed to evaluate the impact of genetically modified (GM) wheat with introduced pm3b mildew resistance transgene, on two types of root-colonizing microorganisms, namely pseudomonads and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). Our investigations were carried out in field trials over three field seasons and at two locations. Serial dilution in selective King's B medium and microscopy were used to assess the abundance of cultivable pseudomonads and AMF, respectively. We developed a denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) method to characterize the diversity of the pqqC gene, which is involved in Pseudomonas phosphate solubilization. A major result was that in the first field season Pseudomonas abundances and diversity on roots of GM pm3b lines, but also on non-GM sister lines were different from those of the parental lines and conventional wheat cultivars. This indicates a strong effect of the procedures by which these plants were created, as GM and sister lines were generated via tissue cultures and propagated in the greenhouse. Moreover, Pseudomonas population sizes and DGGE profiles varied considerably between individual GM lines with different genomic locations of the pm3b transgene. At individual time points, differences in Pseudomonas and AMF accumulation between GM and control lines were detected, but they were not consistent and much less pronounced than differences detected between young and old plants, different conventional wheat cultivars or at different locations and field seasons. Thus, we conclude that impacts of GM wheat on plant-beneficial root-colonizing microorganisms are minor and not of ecological importance. The cultivation-independent pqqC-DGGE approach proved to be a useful tool for monitoring the dynamics of Pseudomonas populations in a wheat field and even sensitive enough for detecting population responses to altered plant physiology.

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Language:English
Date:2013
Deposited On:25 Mar 2013 08:24
Last Modified:21 Nov 2017 16:28
Publisher:Public Library of Science (PLoS)
ISSN:1932-6203
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0053825
PubMed ID:23372672

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