Microorganisms from corn stigma with biocontrol potential of Fusarium verticillioides

Braz J Biol. 2022 Aug 29;82:e262567. doi: 10.1590/1519-6984.262567. eCollection 2022.


The mycotoxigenic fungus Fusarium verticillioides is the primary maize pathogen and causes the maize stalk and ear rot diseases with significant economic losses. Furthermore, the excessive use of fungicides to control F. verticillioides constitutes threats to the environment and human health. Thus, sustainable alternatives such as biological control are needed to minimize the hazards associated with the current method. Although much is known about the vulnerability of the maize silks as a gateway for several fungal pathogens invading the developing grains, studies on the chemical properties of silk extracts and their resident microbiota are scarce. This study isolated and characterized bacteria and fungi that colonize the maize stigma to assess new potential biocontrol agents. The samples were collected from maize fields in the Brazilian localities of Sete Lagoas-MG, Sidrolândia-MS, Sertaneja-PR, and Goiânia-GO. One hundred sixty-seven microorganisms were isolated, 46% endophytic and 54% epiphytic. First, the antagonist activity was evaluated by the agar disc diffusion method performed in triplicate, and 83% of the isolates showed antagonist activity against F. verticillioides. Then, the 42 most efficient isolates were identified based on the partial sequencing of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene and fungi ITS region. The bacteria belong to the genera Bacillus (57.1%), Burkholderia (23.8%), Achromobacter (7.1%), Pseudomonas (2.4%), and Serratia (2.4%), while the fungi are Penicillium (2.4%), Candida (2.4), and Aspergillus (2.4%). The results showed that microorganisms from maize stigma might represent new promising agents for F. verticillioides control.

PMID:36043660 | DOI:10.1590/1519-6984.262567

Source: Industry