Screening of plant growth promoting traits of Bacillus thuringiensis

Noura Raddadi, Ameur Cherif, Abdellatif Boudabous, Daniele Daffonchio*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


This study aimed to evaluate the plant growth promoting (PGP) potential of Bacillus thuringiensis. In this context, several genetic determinants of factors implicated in PGP potential were investigated by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in 16 B. thuringiensis strains of different origin and belonging to different subspecies. PCR screening was performed on acid phosphatase, phytase, siderophore biosynthesis protein, 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate (ACC) deaminase and indolpyruvate decarboxylase (ipdC). Production of indol acetic acid (IAA)-like compounds and of ACC deaminase, and capability of solubilising mineral phosphate were investigated by phenotypic tests. All the strains were PCR positive for the presence of the siderophore biosynthesis protein, ACC deaminase and acid phosphatase genes. Five and seven strains gave an amplicon with the expected length for the phytase and ipdC genes respectively. All the strains produced IAA compounds and seven had a high capacity to solubilise inorganic phosphorous. Qualitative phenotypic test for ACC deaminase activity showed that seven strains are able to grow on salt minimal medium containing ACC as sole nitrogen source, indicating the expression of the accd genes. Our screening results in thirteen strains having more than one PGP trait and showed that B. thuringiensis harbours and expresses several PGP determinants that could be very interesting in field application to enhance the plant growth. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the multiple plant growth promoting potential of B. thuringiensis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-52
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Microbiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • ACCD
  • Bacillus thuringiensis
  • IAA
  • PGPR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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