, Volume 53, Issue 2, pp 113-121
Date: 10 Aug 2011

Diversity and antimicrobial activity of endophytic fungi isolated from Nyctanthes arbor-tristis , a well-known medicinal plant of India

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Endophytic fungi from Nyctanthes arbor-tristis were isolated and evaluated for their antimicrobial activity. A total of 19 endophytic fungi were isolated from 400 segments of healthy leaf and stem tissues of N. arbor-tristis. Eighteen endophytic fungi were obtained from leaf, while only ten from stem. Alternaria alternata had the highest colonization frequency (15.0%) in leaf, whereas Cladosporium cladosporioides ranked first in stem with a colonization frequency of 12%. The diversity and species richness were found higher in leaf tissues than in stem. The similarity indices between leaf and stem were 0.473 for Jaccard’s and 0.642 for the Sorenson index, respectively. Of 16, 12 (75%) endophytic fungal extracts showed antibacterial activity against either one or more pathogenic bacteria. The endophytic Nigrospora oryzae showed maximum inhibition against Shigella sp. and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The leaf endophytes Colletotrichum dematium and Chaetomium globosum exhibited a broad range of anibacterial activity and were active against Shigella flexnii, Shigella boydii, Salmonella enteritidis, Salmonella paratyphi, and P. aeruginosa. Nine out of 16 (56.25%) endophytic fungi exhibited antifungal activity to one or more fungal pathogens. Colletotrichum dematium inhibited 55.87% of the radial growth of the phytopathogen Curvularia lunata. The antimicrobial activity of these endophytic microorganisms could be exploited in the biotechnological, medicinal, and agricultural industries.