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Study of the antifungal activity of Acinetobacter baumannii LCH001 in vitro and identification of its antifungal components

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An Acinetobacter strain, given the code name LCH001 and having the potential to be an endophytic antagonist, has been isolated from healthy stems of the plant Cinnamomum camphora (L.) Presl, guided by an in vitro screening technique. The bacterium inhibited the growth of several phytopathogenic fungi such as Cryphonectria parasitica, Glomerella glycines, Phytophthora capsici, Fusarium graminearum, Botrytis cinerea, and Rhizoctonia solani. Biochemical, physiological, and 16S rDNA sequence analysis proved that it is Acinetobacter baumannii. When the filtrate from the fermentation broth of strain LCH001 was tested in vitro and in vivo, it showed strong growth inhibition against several phytopathogens including P. capsici, F. graminearum, and R. solani, indicating that suppression of the growth of the fungi was due to the presence of antifungal compounds in the culture broth. Moreover, the antifungal activity of the culture filtrate was significantly correlated with the cell growth of strain LCH001. The active metabolites in the filtrate were relatively thermally stable, but were sensitive to acidic conditions. Three antifungal compounds were isolated from the culture broth by absorption onto macropore resin, ethanol extraction, chromatography on silica gel or LH-20 columns, and crystallization. The structures of the bioactive compounds were identified by spectroscopic methods as isomers of iturin A, namely, iturin A2, iturin A3, and iturin A6. The characterization of an unusual endophytic bacterial strain LCH001 and its bioactive components may provide an alternative resource for the biocontrol of plant diseases.

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This work was cofinanced by grants from the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China (0208133051) and a Student Fellowship of Syngenta, UK (0208151088).

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Correspondence to C. H. Liu or Yucheng Gu.

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Liu, C.H., Chen, X., Liu, T.T. et al. Study of the antifungal activity of Acinetobacter baumannii LCH001 in vitro and identification of its antifungal components. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 76, 459–466 (2007).

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  • Acinetobacter baumannii LCH001
  • Antifungal activity
  • Iturin A