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Volume 50 Number 2
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Research articles

ScienceAsia 50 (2024):ID 2024020 1-8 |doi: 10.2306/scienceasia1513-1874.2024.020

Improvement of rice growth and yield by seedling pretreatment to induce the artificial coexistence of nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria and root seedling

Supenya Chittapun*, Kunthida Lomphengthian, Nuankamol Amnuaysin, Chanitchote Piyapittayanun

ABSTRACT:     The induction of an association between a nitrogen-fixing organism and a plant could potentially offer an alternative approach to ensure a sustainable supply of nitrogen for plants. This research aimed to explore the practicality of inducing the coexistence of Nostoc commune TUBT05, a nitrogen-fixing cyanobacterium, and rice seedlings. Seedling roots were facilitated with and without ultrasonic waves and further cocultured in BG-110 solution mixed with N. commune TUBT05. The effects of this artificial coexistence on the growth and yield of rice were investigated through pot experiments. Untreated and pretreated seedling roots with ultrasonic waves and further immersion in cyanobacterial solution showed an association between the seedling roots with different characteristics. When untreated roots were further cultivated in cyanobacterial solution, a cyanobacterial filamentous film covering the root surface was observed while the cluster of scattered cyanobacteria grown on small fragments of the pretreated root surface was found after immersion in cyanobacterial solution. Both pretreated and untreated seedling roots with ultrasonication before immersion showed significant growth promotion in seedlings and rice (p < 0.05). The association of N. commune TUBT05 with rice seedling roots significantly enhanced yield (p < 0.05). Ultrasonication applied during induction showed no stress effect on seedlings. This study suggested that the creation of artificial coexistence between plants and nitrogen-fixing bacteria via simply soaking seedling roots in nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria could be used in agronomic processes to enhance the growth and yield of economically important crops. Further assessment of the feasibility and effectiveness of this approach under field conditions is needed.

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a Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Science and Technology, Thammasat University, Rangsit Centre, Pathum Thani 12120 Thailand

* Corresponding author, E-mail: supenyac@tu.ac.th

Received 3 Jan 2023, Accepted 18 Jan 2024