Plant and Soil

, Volume 302, Issue 1–2, pp 149–161 | Cite as

Physiological and genetic analysis of root responsiveness to auxin-producing plant growth-promoting bacteria in common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.)

  • Roseline Remans
  • Steve Beebe
  • Matthew Blair
  • German Manrique
  • Eduardo Tovar
  • Idupulapati Rao
  • Anja Croonenborghs
  • Roldan Torres-Gutierrez
  • Mohammed El-Howeity
  • Jan Michiels
  • Jos VanderleydenEmail author
Regular Article


Plant root development can be largely affected through the association of roots with plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). However, little is known about the identity of plant genes enabling such PGPR-plant root associations. Differences in the responsiveness to PGPR among cultivars suggest genetic variation for this trait within germplasm. In this study, two genotypes of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.), BAT477 and DOR364, were identified showing contrasting responsiveness in root development to inoculation with the PGPR Azospirillum brasilense Sp245. Inoculation with an A. brasilense Sp245 mutant strain strongly reduced in auxin biosynthesis or addition of increasing concentrations of exogenous auxin to the plant growth medium, indicated that the differential response to A. brasilense Sp245 among the bean genotypes is related to a differential response to the bacterial produced auxin. To further assess the role of the plant host in root responsiveness, a population of Recombinant Inbred Lines (RILs) of the DOR364×BAT477 cross was used to evaluate the efficacy of exogenous auxin on root development. We detected significant phenotypic variation among the RILs for basal root formation during germination upon addition of auxin to the growth medium. Genetic analysis revealed two quantitative trait loci (QTLs) associated with basal root responsiveness to auxin of which one explained 36% of the phenotypic variation among the RILs. This latter QTL mapped to the same location as a QTL for root tip formation at low P, suggesting that the host effect on root responsiveness to IAA interacts with specific root development. Also, significant correlations between basal root responsiveness to auxin and growth, root tips and root dry weight at low P were identified. To our knowledge, this is the first report on QTL detection for root responsiveness to auxin.


Common bean Indole-3-acetic acid Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria Quantitative trait loci Root responsiveness 



R.R. is a recipient of a predoctoral fellowship from the ‘Vlaamse Interuniversitaire Raad (VLIR)’ R.T. acknowledges the receipt of a predoctoral fellowship from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. We thank Dr. Myriam Duque for her assistance with the QTL analysis and Dr. Jerome Ribet and Alejandro Velasco for their contributions to the genetic map.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roseline Remans
    • 1
  • Steve Beebe
    • 2
  • Matthew Blair
    • 2
  • German Manrique
    • 2
  • Eduardo Tovar
    • 2
  • Idupulapati Rao
    • 2
  • Anja Croonenborghs
    • 1
  • Roldan Torres-Gutierrez
    • 1
  • Mohammed El-Howeity
    • 1
  • Jan Michiels
    • 1
  • Jos Vanderleyden
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Centre of Microbial and Plant Genetics, Department of Microbial and Molecular SystemsK.U. LeuvenHeverleeBelgium
  2. 2.Centro Internacional de Agricultura Tropical (CIAT)CaliColombia

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