Promotion of growth and phytoextraction of cadmium and lead in Solanum nigrum L. mediated by plant-growth-promoting rhizobacteria.Ecotoxicol Environ Saf. 2020 Dec 01; 205:111333.EE
Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) are a specific category of microbes that improve plant growth and promote greater tolerance to metal stress through their interactions with plant roots. We evaluated the effects of phytoremediation combining the cadmium accumulator Solanum nigrum L. and two Cd- and Pb-resistant bacteria isolates. To understand the interaction between PGPR and their host plant, we conducted greenhouse experiments with inoculation treatments at Nanjing Agricultural University (Jiangsu Province, China), in June 2018. Two Cd- and Pb-resistant PGPR with various growth-promoting properties were isolated from heavy metal-contaminated soil. 16S rRNA analyses indicated that the two isolates were Bacillus genus, and they were named QX8 and QX13. Pot experiments demonstrated that inoculation may improve the rhizosphere soil environment and promote absorption of Fe and P by plants. Inoculation with QX8 and QX13 also enhanced the dry weight of shoots (1.36- and 1.7-fold, respectively) and roots (1.42- and 1.96-fold) of plants growing in Cd- and Pb-contaminated soil, and significantly increased total Cd (1.28-1.81 fold) and Pb (1.08-1.55 fold) content in aerial organs, compared to non-inoculated controls. We also detected increases of 23% and 22% in the acid phosphatase activity of rhizosphere soils inoculated with QX8 and QX13, respectively. However, we did not detect significant differences between inoculated and non-inoculated treatments in Cd and Pb concentrations in plants and available Cd and Pb content in rhizosphere soils. We demonstrated that PGPR-assisted phytoremediation is a promising technique for remediating heavy metal-contaminated soils, with the potential to enhance phytoremediation efficiency and improve soil quality.