Classification of the plant-associated phenotype of Pseudomonas strains using genome properties



The rhizosphere, the region of soil surrounding roots of plants, is colonized by a unique population of Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria (PGPR). By enhancing nutrient uptake from the soil and through modulation of plant phytohormone status and metabolism, PGPR can increase the stress tolerance, growth and yield of crop plants. Many important PGPR as well as plant pathogens belong to the genus Pseudomonas. There is, however, uncertainty on the divide between phytobeneficial and phytopathogenic strains as previously thought to be signifying genomic features have limited power to separate these strains. Here the Genome properties (GP) common biological pathways annotation system was applied to establish the relationship between the genome wide GP composition and the plant-associated phenotype of 91 Pseudomonas strains representing both phenotypes. GP enrichment analysis and Random Forest model fitting and feature selection revealed 28 discriminating features. A validation dataset of 67 new strains confirmed the importance of the selected features for classification. The results suggest that GP annotations provide a promising computational tool to better classify the plant-associated phenotype. A number of unexpected discriminating features were found suggesting the involvement of novel molecular mechanisms.
Date made available20 Jul 2021
PublisherWageningen University & Research


  • Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria

Accession numbers

  • PRJEB45033
  • ERP129149

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