Interactions between soil compositions and the wheat root microbiome under drought stress: From an in silico to in planta perspective

Jiyeon Si, Emilie Froussart, Tom Viaene, Jorge F. Vazquez-Castellanos, Kelly Hamonts, Lin Tang, Stien Beirinckx, Annick De Keyser, Tibby Deckers, Fien Amery, Steven Vandenabeele, Jeroen Raes, Sofie Goormachtig

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As wheat (Triticum aestivum) is an important staple food across the world, preservation of stable yields and increased productivity are major objectives in breeding programs. Drought is a global concern because its adverse impact is expected to be amplified in the future due to the current climate change. Here, we analyzed the effects of edaphic, environmental, and host factors on the wheat root microbiomes collected in soils from six regions in Belgium. Amplicon sequencing analysis of unplanted soil and wheat root endosphere samples indicated that the microbial community variations can be significantly explained by soil pH, microbial biomass, wheat genotype, and soil sodium and iron levels. Under drought stress, the biodiversity in the soil decreased significantly, but increased in the root endosphere community, where specific soil parameters seemingly determine the enrichment of bacterial groups. Indeed, we identified a cluster of drought-enriched bacteria that significantly correlated with soil compositions. Interestingly, integration of a functional analysis further revealed a strong correlation between the same cluster of bacteria and β-glucosidase and osmoprotectant proteins, two functions known to be involved in coping with drought stress. By means of this in silico analysis, we identified amplicon sequence variants (ASVs) that could potentially protect the plant from drought stress and validated them in planta. Yet, ASVs based on 16S rRNA sequencing data did not completely distinguish individual isolates because of their intrinsic short sequences. Our findings support the efforts to maintain stable crop yields under drought conditions through implementation of root microbiome analyses.
Oorspronkelijke taalEngels
TijdschriftComputational and structural biotechnology journal
Volume19
Pagina's (van-tot)4235-4247
ISSN2001-0370
DOI's
PublicatiestatusGepubliceerd - 2021

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