Plant and Soil

, Volume 356, Issue 1–2, pp 217–230 | Cite as

Contrasting colonization and plant growth promoting capacity between wild type and a gfp-derative of the endophyte Pseudomonas putida W619 in hybrid poplar

  • Nele Weyens
  • Jana Boulet
  • Dirk Adriaensen
  • Jean-Pierre Timmermans
  • Els Prinsen
  • Sandra Van Oevelen
  • Jan D’Haen
  • Karen Smeets
  • Daniel van der Lelie
  • Safiyh Taghavi
  • Jaco Vangronsveld
Regular Article


This study aims to investigate the colonization of poplar by the endophyte Pseudomonas putida W619 and its capacity to promote plant growth. Poplar cuttings were inoculated with P. putida W619 (wild-type or gfp-labelled). The colonization of both strains was investigated and morphological, physiological and biochemical parameters were analyzed to evaluate plant growth promotion. Inoculation with P. putida W619 (wild-type) resulted in remarkable growth promotion, decreased activities of antioxidative defence related enzymes, and reduced stomatal resistance, all indicative of improved plant health and growth in comparison with the non-inoculated cuttings. In contrast, inoculation with gfp-labelled P. putida W619 did not promote growth; it even had a negative effect on plant health and growth. Furthermore, compared to the wildtype strain, colonization by the gfp-labelled P. putida W619::gfp1 was much lower; it only colonized the rhizosphere and root cortex while the wild-type strain also colonized the root xylem vessels. Despite the strong plant growth promoting capacity of P. putida W619 (wild-type), after gfp labelling its growth promoting characteristics disappeared and its colonization capacity was strongly influenced; for these reasons gfp labelling should be applied with sufficient caution.


plant growth promotion endophyte poplar biomass production food-bioenergy conflict green fluorescent protein 



This research was funded by the Institute for the Promotion of Innovation through Science and Technology in Flanders (IWT-Vlaanderen) for N.W. and by the Fund for Scientific Research Flanders (FWO-Vlaanderen), Ph.D. grant for J.B. The project was further supported by the UHasselt Methusalem project 08 M03 VGRJ. Work by S.T. was funded by Laboratory Directed Research and Development funds (LDRD05-063 and LDRD09-005) at the Brookhaven National Laboratory under contract with the U.S. Department of Energy.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nele Weyens
    • 1
  • Jana Boulet
    • 1
  • Dirk Adriaensen
    • 2
  • Jean-Pierre Timmermans
    • 2
  • Els Prinsen
    • 3
  • Sandra Van Oevelen
    • 3
  • Jan D’Haen
    • 4
  • Karen Smeets
    • 5
  • Daniel van der Lelie
    • 6
  • Safiyh Taghavi
    • 7
  • Jaco Vangronsveld
    • 1
  1. 1.Environmental BiologyHasselt UniversityDiepenbeekBelgium
  2. 2.Laboratory of Cell Biology & Histology, Department of Veterinary SciencesAntwerp UniversityAntwerpBelgium
  3. 3.Department of Biology, GroenenborgercampusAntwerp UniversityAntwerpBelgium
  4. 4.Institute for Materials ResearchHasselt UniversityDiepenbeekBelgium
  5. 5.Biodiversity, Phylogeny & Population StudiesHasselt UniversityDiepenbeekBelgium
  6. 6.Research Triangle Institute (RTI)Research Triangle ParkUSA
  7. 7.Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), Biology DepartmentUptonUSA

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