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Halotolerant PGPB Seed biopriming Induces wheat salinity tolerance
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1  Laboratory of Microbial Biotechnology and Engineering Enzymes (LBMIE), Center of Biotechnology of Sfax (CBS), University of Sfax, Road of Sidi Mansour km 6, PO Box 1177 Sfax 3018, Tunisia.
2  Astrum Biotech, Business incubator, Center of Biotechnology of Sfax (CBS), University of Sfax, Road of Sidi Mansour km 6, PO Box 1177 Sfax 3018, Tunisia.
3  OMICS Research Group & Facility: Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Applied & Computer Sciences, Vanderbijlpark Campus, Private Bag, X021 - Vanderbijlpark - 1911 - Andries Potgieter Blvd - South Africa


Salinity is one of the most severe abiotic stresses limiting crop yield. Salt-affected area in Tunisia is fast escalating due to intrusion of saline water on arable land and use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Thus, a great effort is required to preserve crop production under limiting factors.

The present study was conducted to isolate and identify PGPB associated with two halophyte plants from coastal saline site. These strains were tested for improved crop productivity under salinity conditions. Four strains namely MA9, MA14, MA17 and MA19 were selected

The PGPB-inoculated plants were relatively healthy and hydrated, whereas the uninoculated plant leaves were desiccated in the presence of 125 mM NaCl. The percentage of water content (PWC) in the plant was also significantly higher in inoculated plants compared to uninoculated ones. Under greenhouse experiments, our data revealed that experiments using seed biopriming on non-sterile soil supplemented with NaCl permitted to identify the most efficient isolates which offered the best vegetable criteria by significantly increasing root and shoot length, root and shoot dry weights, area of the root system and thousand seed mass in plant growth trials. The benefic effect of seed biopriming was more pronounced in soil samples added with NaCl than that of untreated soil.

Seed biopriming by efficient PGPB strains induced salinity tolerance of wheat and therefore enhanced their productivity under salinity.

Keywords: biopriming, halotolerant PGPB, Nitrogen fixation, durum wheat, salinity