Effects of 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA)-containing supernatants from selected Rhodopseudomonas palustris strains on rice growth under NaCl stress, with mediating effects on chlorophyll, photosynthetic electron transport and antioxidative enzymes

Tomorn Nunkaew, Duangporn Kantachote, Hiroshi Kanzaki, Teruhiko Nitoda, Raymond J. Ritchie

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Background: Rice is globally one of the most important food crops, and NaCl stress is a key factor reducing rice yield. Amelioration of NaCl stress was assessed by determining the growth of rice seedlings treated with culture supernatants containing 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) secreted by strains of Rhodopseudomonas palustris (TN114 and PP803) and compared to the effects of synthetic ALA (positive control) and no ALA content (negative control). Results: The relative root growth of rice seedlings was determined under NaCl stress (50 mM NaCl), after 21 days of pretreatment. Pretreatments with 1 μM commercial ALA and 10X diluted culture supernatant of strain TN114 (2.57 μM ALA) gave significantly better growth than 10X diluted PP803 supernatant (2.11 μM ALA). Rice growth measured by dry weight under NaCl stress ordered the pretreatments as: commercial ALA > TN114 > PP803> negative control. NaCl stress strongly decreased total chlorophyll of the plants that correlated with non photochemical quenching of fluorescence (NPQ). The salt stress also strongly increased hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) concentration in NaCl-stressed plants. The pretreatments were ordered by reduction in H2O2 content under NaCl stress as: commercial ALA > TN114 > PP803> negative control. The ALA pretreatments incurred remarkable increases of total chlorophyll and antioxidative activities of catalase (CAT), ascorbate peroxide (APx), glutathione reductase (GR) and superoxide dismutase (SOD); under NaCl stress commercial ALA and TN114 had generally stronger effects than PP803. Conclusions: The strain TN114 has potential as a plant growth stimulating bacterium that might enhance rice growth in saline paddy fields at a lower cost than commercial ALA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-26
Number of pages8
JournalElectronic Journal of Biotechnology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014



  • 5-Aminolevulinic acid (ALA)
  • Antioxidative enzymes
  • Chlorophyll fluorescence
  • Rhodopseudomonas palustris
  • Rice
  • Salinity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

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