What is it about?

Many bacteria secrete siderophores to scavenge iron from the environment. Here, we show that siderophores play a key role in competitive interactions between the plant pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum and bacteria inhabiting the rhizosphere. Using in vitro and in vivo assays, we demonstrate that rhizosphere bacteria with growth-inhibitory siderophores can suppress the pathogen, and thereby protect plants from infection.

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Why is it important?

Plant pathogens such as Ralstonia solanacearum cause high crop and economic losses to human societies. By establishing a causal mechanistic link between microbe-level competition for iron and plant protection, our study opens promising avenues to use siderophore-mediated interactions as a tool for pathogen control.


I was very fortunate to become involved in this collaboration. I think this study nicely illustrates just how important it can be to understand how microbes interact with each other.

Dr Jos Kramer
ETH Zurich, D-USYS

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Competition for iron drives phytopathogen control by natural rhizosphere microbiomes, Nature Microbiology, May 2020, Springer Science + Business Media,
DOI: 10.1038/s41564-020-0719-8.
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