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Title: Nematicidal Bacteria Associated to Pinewood Nematode Produce Extracellular Proteases
Authors: Paiva, Gabriel 
Proença, Diogo Neves 
Francisco, Romeu 
Veríssimo, P. 
Santos, Susana S. 
Fonseca, Luís 
Abrantes, I. M. O. 
Morais, P. V. 
Issue Date: 2013
Serial title, monograph or event: PLoS ONE
Volume: 8
Issue: 11
Abstract: Bacteria associated with the nematode Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, a pathogen of trees and the causal agent of pine wilt disease (PWD) may play a role in the disease. In order to evaluate their role (positive or negative to the tree), strains isolated from the track of nematodes from infected Pinus pinaster trees were screened, in vitro, for their nematicidal potential. The bacterial products, from strains more active in killing nematodes, were screened in order to identify and characterize the nematicidal agent. Forty-seven strains were tested and, of these, 21 strains showed capacity to produce extracellular products with nematicidal activity. All Burkholderia strains were non-toxic. In contrast, all Serratia strains except one exhibited high toxicity. Nematodes incubated with Serratia strains showed, by SEM observation, deposits of bacteria on the nematode cuticle. The most nematicidal strain, Serratia sp. A88copa13, produced proteases in the supernatant. The use of selective inhibitors revealed that a serine protease with 70 kDa was majorly responsible for the toxicity of the supernatant. This extracellular serine protease is different phylogenetically, in size and biochemically from previously described proteases. Nematicidal assays revealed differences in nematicidal activity of the proteases to different species of Bursaphelenchus, suggesting its usefulness in a primary screen of the nematodes. This study offers the basis for further investigation of PWD and brings new insights on the role bacteria play in the defense of pine trees against B. xylophilus. Understanding all the factors involved is important in order to develop strategies to control B. xylophilus dispersion.
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0079705
Rights: openAccess
Appears in Collections:FCTUC Ciências da Vida - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais

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