Effect of combination of Azolla microphylla and As(V)-resistant bacterial consortium on growth, oxidative stress and arsenic accumulation in rice plant under As(V) stress

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Agnihotri, Puja, Sikdar, Suchismita, Maitra, Madhumita, Choudhury, Sudeshna Shyam, Mitra, Arup Kumar

Research Articles | Published: 17 February, 2022

Print ISSN : 0970-4078.
Online ISSN : 2229-4473.
Pub Email: contact@vegetosindia.org
Doi: 10.1007/s42535-022-00345-y
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Last Page: 0
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Keywords: n Azolla microphyllan , Arsenic, Reactive oxygen species, Lipid peroxidation


Arsenic (As) pollution in paddy fields is a major environmental threat in many parts of South Asia. In the present study we have explored the role of Azolla microphylla in conjunction with an arsenate [As(V)]-resistant bacterial consortium in modulating the growth and As accumulation in rice plant exposed to 7 mg/l of As(V) stress. The bacterial strains used in consortium show plant growth promoting traits such as siderophore production, phosphate solubilisation and indole acetic acid production. Under As(V) stress, the rice plant exhibited symptoms of phytotoxicity in the form of reduced shoot length or plant height, panicle formation, photosynthetic ability and increased generation of the reactive oxygen species (H2O2) and biological peroxidation of membranes. These effects were alleviated when the rice plant was exposed to As(V) stress in presence of the Azolla microphylla-bacterial consortium combination, causing a marked improvement in physical growth parameters such as shoot length and panicle count, and up to 20.7 and 13% increase in total chlorophyll and carotenoid contents respectively. Oxidative stress was also alleviated, as indicated by 58.5 and 26.7% reduction in endogenous H2O2 content and lipid peroxidation respectively. The residual concentration of As in the soil used for rice paddy cultivation was found to be 25% lesser in the set containing Azolla-bacterial consortium combination than that of the set lacking this combination. The uptake of As in shoot of rice plant was also significantly lesser in the set treated with this Azolla-bacterial consortium and followed the order: leaves > grain. Thus, such a combination of the bio-fertilizer Azolla microphylla and As(V)-resistant plant growth promoting bacterial consortium is capable of alleviating As(V)-induced phytotoxicity in rice plant, with simultaneous reduction in As accumulation in grains, thereby showing potential for use in As-bioremediation in the As-polluted rice paddy fields.

n              Azolla microphyllan            , Arsenic, Reactive oxygen species, Lipid peroxidation


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The authors would like to acknowledge the financial aid from West Bengal Department of Science & Technology and Biotechnology.

Author Information

Agnihotri, Puja
Department of Microbiology, St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, India
Sikdar, Suchismita
Department of Microbiology, St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, India

Maitra, Madhumita
Department of Microbiology, St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, India

Choudhury, Sudeshna Shyam
Department of Microbiology, St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, India

Mitra, Arup Kumar
Department of Microbiology, St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, India