Comparison of two sympatric Pasteuria populations isolated from a tropical vertisol soil
Sharma, S. B.
An isolate of Pasteuria (designated PPMJ) recovered from the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne javanica, was characterized using host preference, spore morphometrics, and serology, and compared with another sympatric Pasteuria isolate (designated PPHC) collected from the cyst nematode, Heterodera cajani. PPMJ spores were larger (X 1.5) than the PPHC spores and had a mean diameter of 3.4 mu m after fixation for electron microscopy. The central body of PPMJ spores was about twice as big as the central body of PPHC spores. The host preference tests, based on spore attachment to the nematode cuticle, revealed that Meloidogyne incognita, M. javanica, M. hapla, Pratylenchus coffeae, and Pratylenchus sp. were hosts of PPMJ but not of PPHC. It was found that males of Radopholus similis were hosts of PPHC. Western blot analysis of spore extracts probed with a polyclonal antiserum raised against PPHC spores showed an antigenic ladder which had similarities to lipopolysaccharide; another antiserum revealed differences in the molecular weight of antigens of the different spore isolates. Population diversity can therefore be vastly altered by the maintenance and culture of the bacterium on a particular host. The implications of these results are discussed in relation to the use of Pasteuria as a biological control agent.