Current Microbiology

, Volume 19, Issue 6, pp 375–381 | Cite as

Detection of plasmid RP4 transfer in soil and rhizosphere, and the occurrence of homology to RP4 in soil bacteria

  • Jan D. van Elsas
  • Marcel Nikkel
  • Leo S. van Overbeek


Plasmid RP4 transfer between introduced pseudomonads was studied in non-rhizosphere and rhizosphere soil. The addition of nutrients to the non-rhizosphere soil stimulated plasmid transfers between introduced donor and recipient cells, and no transfer was detected in nonamended soil. Transfer was also detected in soil in a model rhizosphere, but not in corresponding non-rhizosphere soil. Colony hybridization with whole plasmid RP4 DNA as a probe was employed to detect transfers to indigenous organisms in soil. Although transfers to introduced recipient cells were easily detected in parallel controls, no indigenous organisms were identified that had received RP4. Background levels of soil organisms with the RP4 resistance pattern were considerable, and about 10% of these populations contained DNA sequences with homology to RP4. However, no plasmids could be detected in any of 20 isolates, nor was resistance transfer to aPseudomonas fluorescens recipient detected in filter matings.


Pseudomonad Background Level Resistance Transfer Rhizosphere Soil Soil Bacterium 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan D. van Elsas
    • 1
  • Marcel Nikkel
    • 1
  • Leo S. van Overbeek
    • 1
  1. 1.Research Institute ItalWageningenThe Netherlands

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