From metagenome and proteome to biocontrol: analysis ofmoss- and lichen-associated microbial communities


Abstract: Bryophytes and lichens represent interesting bioresources; their tight interaction withmicroorganisms is only partly understood. Recently it was shown that both groups of cryptogamsare colonized at high abundance with special microbial communities, which functionallycontribute to the vitality of moss plantlets and lichen symbioses. To characterize biodiversity ofassociated microbial communities, we applied combination of methods: phylogenetic diversity ofclone libraries and metagenomic and proteomic approaches. In addition, isolates wereinvestigated regarding their interaction with plants. According to our results, cryptogamassociatedmicrobial communities comprise a unique pool of highly diverse, mostly uncultivableand host-specific microorganisms which community structure strongly depends on abiotic andbiotic factors. Additionally, bacteria were isolated for biotechnological applications. A highproportion of isolates showed antifungal activities and a remarkable plant growth promotion bynitrogen fixation, phosphate solubilisation and production of phytohormons as well as highbiocontrol potential.

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