A gnotobiotic model to examine plant and microbiome contributions to survival under arsenic stress

María Del Carmen Molina, James F. White, Sara García-Salgado, M. Ángeles Quijano, Natalia González-Benítez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


So far, the relative importance of the plant and its microbiome in the development of early stages of plant seedling growth under arsenic stress has not been studied. To test the role of endo-phytic bacteria in increasing plant success under arsenic stress, gnotobiotic seeds of J. montana were inoculated with two endophytic bacteria: Pantoea conspicua MC-K1 (PGPB and As resistant bacteria) and Arthrobacter sp. MC-D3A (non-helper and non-As resistant bacteria) and an endobacteria mix-ture. In holobiotic seedlings (with seed-vectored microbes intact), neither the capacity of germination nor development of roots and lateral hairs was affected at 125 μM As (V). However, in gnoto-biotic seedlings, the plants are negatively impacted by absence of a microbiome and presence of arsenic, resulting in reduced growth of roots and root hairs. The inoculation of a single PGPB (P. conspicua-MCK1) shows a tendency to the recovery of the plant, both in arsenic enriched and arse-nic-free media, while the inoculation with Arthrobacter sp. does not help in the recovery of the plants. Inoculation with a bacterial mixture allows recovery of plants in arsenic free media; however, plants did not recover under arsenic stress, probably because of a bacterial interaction in the mixture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number45
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Virology
  • Microbiology (medical)


  • Arsenic
  • Biome
  • Endophytic bacteria
  • Gnotobiotic
  • Healthy plant

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