Functional characterization of culturable fungi from microbiomes of the "conical cobs" Mexican maize (Zea mays L.) landrace
Arch Microbiol. 2021 Dec 22;204(1):57. doi: 10.1007/s00203-021-02680-1.
Mexican maize landraces, produced for local consumption, are adapted to different environmental conditions, and their yield is affected by abiotic and biotic factors, including the use of agrochemicals. The search for sustainable alternatives to agrochemicals includes the study of the culturable microbial communities. In this study, the fungal communities associated with 2 Mexican maize landraces reddish and bluish “conical cobs” were found to be comprised of Ascomycota fungi, represented by 89 strains within 6 orders (Pleosporales, Hypocreales, Onygenales, Capnodiales, Helotiales, and Eurotiales) and 16 genera. Cellulases and metallophores production were the primary enzymatic products and plant growth-promoting activities were detected among the isolates. Penicillium, Didymella, and Fusarium strains had the most active enzymatic and plant growth promoting activities, however, Aspergillus sp. HES2-2.2, Talaromyces sp. RS1-7, and Penicillium sp. HFS3-3 showed antagonistic activity against the four phytopathogenic Fusarium strains Fusarium oxysporum, Fusarium sambucinum, Fusarium fujikuroi and Fusarium incarnatum-equiseti and also a high and diverse production of enzymatic and plant growth promoting activities; here we identified fungal strains as candidates to promote maize growth.