IncP-1 and PromA group plasmids are major providers of horizontal gene transfer capacities across bacteria in the mycosphere of different soil fungi

Miaozhi Zhang, Sander Visser, Michele C. Pereira e Silva, Jan Dirk van Elsas*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Plasmids of the IncP-1 beta group have been found to be important carriers of accessory genes that enhance the ecological fitness of bacteria, whereas plasmids of the PromA group are key agents of horizontal gene transfer in particular soil settings. However, there is still a paucity of knowledge with respect to the diversity, abundance, and involvement in horizontal gene transfer of plasmids of both groups in the mycosphere. Using triparental exogenous isolation based on the IncQ tracer plasmid pSUP104 as well as direct molecular detection, we analyzed the pool of mobilizer and self-transferable plasmids in mycosphere soil. Replicate mushroom types that were related to Russula, Inocybe, Ampulloclitocybe, and Galerina spp. were sampled from a forest soil area, and bulk soil was used as the control. The data showed that the levels of IncP-1 beta plasmids are significantly raised across several of the mycospheres analyzed, whereas those of PromA group plasmids were similar across the mycospheres and corresponding bulk soil. Moreover, the frequencies of triparental exogenous isolation of mobilizer plasmids into a Pseudomonas fluorescens recipient strain were significantly elevated in communities from several mycospheres as compared with those from bulk soil. Molecular analysis of selected transconjugants, as well as from directly isolated strains, revealed the presence of plasmids of three size groups, i.e., (1) 40-45, (2) 50-60, and (3) a parts per thousand yen60 kb, across all isolations. Replicon typing using IncN, IncW and IncA/C proxies revealed no positive signals. In contrast, a suite of plasmids produced signals with IncP-1 beta as well as PromA type replicon typing systems. Moreover, a selected subset of plasmids, obtained from the Inocybe and Galerina isolates, was transferred out further, revealing their capacities to transfer and mobilize across a broad host range.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)169-179
Number of pages11
JournalMicrobial ecology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan-2015


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