Cellulolytic bacteria as primary colonizers ofPotamogeton pectinatus L. (Sago Pond Weed) from a Brackish South-Temperate Coastal Lake
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Bacteria adhering to newly emerged and decomposing leaves ofPotamogeton pectinatus L. were examined using scanning electron microscopy. Bacteria obtained from mature leaves were isolated, grown in pure culture, and allowed to infect bacteria-free leaves. Infected leaves and individual isolates were examined by scanning electron microscopy. The method provided detail of the forms of bacterial attachment to leaf surfaces.
Supernatants from isolate cultures were assayed for cellulase activity. Six out of eight isolates produced extracellular cellulase in medium containing carboxymethyl cellulose. In one isolate cellulase was produced at discrete intervals, at the beginning and end of the growth cycle. The adhesion of the isolates toP. pectinatus leaves, as well as their possession of cellulase, are considered as evidence of an active role of bacteria in the degradation ofP. pectinatus foliage. The system is unusual in that bacteria, as opposed to fungi, are primary colonizers of the leaves.
KeywordsCellulose Scanning Electron Microscopy Cellulase Pure Culture Leaf Surface
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