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Plant and Soil
  • Hanoch Glassner, 
  • Einat Zchori-Fein, 
  • Sima Yaron, 
  • Angela Sessitsch, 
  • Ursula Sauer  
  • Stéphane Compant

Background and aims

Seeds are inhabited by diverse bacterial and fungal taxa whose colonization patterns are little understood. We hypothesized, however, that specific niches within seeds host microbes.

Methods

In this study, the putative presence of bacteria, inhabiting the seed endosphere of an angiosperm, the melon Cucumis melo reticulatus group cv. ‘Dulce’, was examined by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and confocal laser-scanning microscopy coupled with double labeling of oligonucleotide probes for fluorescence in situ hybridization (DOPE-FISH).

Results

SEM images showed microbial-like structures in different tissues and FISH revealed endophytic bacteria colonizing the outer and inner seed parts, on perisperm/endosperm envelope, inside the cotyledons as parts of the embryo, and, to a lesser extent, inside embryonic hypocotyl-root axis tissues. Alphaproteobacteria were shown to inhabit the seed coat and the envelope surrounding the embryonic hypocotyl-root tissues, but could not be seen in the cotyledons, whereas Betaproteobacteria were only detected in the outer seed coat. Some Gammaproteobacteria were also seen in the outer seed coat, but were mainly visualized in the cotyledons with a few inside the seed’s embryonic hypocotyl-root tissues, among other bacteria. Firmicutes were visualized inside the seed coat, but mostly inside the cotyledon tissues, on the perisperm/endosperm envelope and inside the embryonic hypocotyl-root axis tissues. Microscopy revealed Actinobacteria inside the inner and outer seed coat and inside the embryonic parts such as cotyledons, with a few inside the hypocotyl-root axis.

Conclusions

This is the first demonstration of niches for the most active groups of bacteria inhabiting different seed tissues of an angiosperm.

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Bacterial niches inside seeds of Cucumis melo L.
422
  • Hanoch Glassner, 
  • Einat Zchori-Fein, 
  • Sima Yaron, 
  • Angela Sessitsch, 
  • Ursula Sauer  
  • Stéphane Compant
Bacterial niches inside seeds of Cucumis melo L.

Background and aims

Seeds are inhabited by diverse bacterial and fungal taxa whose colonization patterns are little understood. We hypothesized, however, that specific niches within seeds host microbes.

Methods

In this study, the putative presence of bacteria, inhabiting the seed endosphere of an angiosperm, the melon Cucumis melo reticulatus group cv. ‘Dulce’, was examined by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and confocal laser-scanning microscopy coupled with double labeling of oligonucleotide probes for fluorescence in situ hybridization (DOPE-FISH).

Results

SEM images showed microbial-like structures in different tissues and FISH revealed endophytic bacteria colonizing the outer and inner seed parts, on perisperm/endosperm envelope, inside the cotyledons as parts of the embryo, and, to a lesser extent, inside embryonic hypocotyl-root axis tissues. Alphaproteobacteria were shown to inhabit the seed coat and the envelope surrounding the embryonic hypocotyl-root tissues, but could not be seen in the cotyledons, whereas Betaproteobacteria were only detected in the outer seed coat. Some Gammaproteobacteria were also seen in the outer seed coat, but were mainly visualized in the cotyledons with a few inside the seed’s embryonic hypocotyl-root tissues, among other bacteria. Firmicutes were visualized inside the seed coat, but mostly inside the cotyledon tissues, on the perisperm/endosperm envelope and inside the embryonic hypocotyl-root axis tissues. Microscopy revealed Actinobacteria inside the inner and outer seed coat and inside the embryonic parts such as cotyledons, with a few inside the hypocotyl-root axis.

Conclusions

This is the first demonstration of niches for the most active groups of bacteria inhabiting different seed tissues of an angiosperm.

Scientific Publication
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