Different toxic effects of ferulic and p-hydroxybenzoic acids on cucumber seedling growth were related to their different influences on rhizosphere microbial composition

  • Xue Jin
  • Fengzhi Wu
  • Xingang ZhouEmail author
Original Paper


Rhizosphere microbial communities of cucumber seedlings treated with ferulic (FA) and p-hydroxybenzoic acids (PHBA) were analyzed by quantitative PCR and Illumina sequencing. Then, growth responses of cucumber seedlings to changes in the composition of rhizosphere microbial communities were assessed. Compared with PHBA, FA had higher inhibitory effects on cucumber seedling growth and higher stimulating effects on the pathogen Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. cucumerinum, which led to severer Fusarium wilting. Both FA and PHBA increased the abundances and changed the compositions of bacterial and fungal communities. However, bacterial and fungal community compositions differed between the treatments of FA and PHBA. Both FA- and PHBA-treated cucumber rhizosphere biota inhibited cucumber seedling growth with FA having stronger inhibitory effects. F. oxysporum f.sp. cucumerinum can utilize FA and PHBA in vitro. Overall, the higher phytotoxic effect of FA than PHBA on cucumber seedling growth was linked to their different influences on the composition of rhizosphere microbial communities, especially the stronger stimulating effect of FA than PHBA on F. oxysporum f.sp. cucumerinum.


Cucumis sativus Phenolic acid Rhizosphere microbial communities Structure-function relationship Soil-borne pathogen 


Funding information

This work was supported by the National Key Research and Development Program (2018YFD1000800), National Natural Science Foundation of China (31772361), Natural Science Foundation of Heilongjiang Province (YQ2019C009), and China Agricultural Research System (CARS-23-B-10).

Supplementary material

374_2019_1408_MOESM1_ESM.doc (4 mb)
ESM 1 (DOC 4211 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Biology and Genetic Improvement of Horticultural Crops (Northeast Region), Ministry of Agriculture and Rural AffairsNortheast Agricultural UniversityHarbinChina
  2. 2.Department of HorticultureNortheast Agricultural UniversityHarbinChina

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