The beneficial root endophyte Piriformospora indica reduces egg density of the soybean cyst nematode

Ruchika Bajaj, Weiming Hu, YinYin Huang, Senyu Chen, Ram Prasad, Ajit Varma, Kathryn E. Bushley

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22 Scopus citations


The soybean cyst nematode ( Heterodera glycines) is a plant parasitic nematode that is a major plant pest worldwide and causes severe economic and yield losses. Piriformospora indica, a plant growth promoting fungus isolated from the Thar Deserts of western India, has been shown to protect a wide range of plants from various biotic and abiotic stresses. To evaluate the potential of P. indica to protect soybean ( Glycine max) seedlings from damage by the soybean cyst nematode (SCN), we amended soil with two different concentrations of P. indica (2.5% and 5% w/w) and inoculated with second-stage juveniles (J2s) of SCN in each treatment. After 60. days, abundance of nematode eggs was measured by calculating SCN egg population densities. We found that egg density/100. cc soil was significantly decreased by 29.7% and 36.7% respectively in the soil amended with 2.5% and 5% P. indica compared to a control. Amendment with P. indica also had a strong growth and yield promoting effect in Soybean. Although root biomass was significantly decreased by 27.9% and 33.5% in the two treatments compared to the control, shoot biomass (dry weight) increased by 30.8% and 8.2% in the 2.5% and 5% P. indica treatments compared to the control. Additionally, plant development was accelerated and a 75% increase in flowering was observed between the 2.5% P. indica treatment and the control. We conclude that P. indica used as a soil amendment decreases abundance of the SCN in soil and has plant-growth promoting properties that may help offset yield losses due to plant parasitic nematodes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)193-199
Number of pages7
JournalBiological Control
StatePublished - Nov 1 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Inc.


  • Biocontrol
  • Biotic stress
  • Piriformospora indica
  • Soybean
  • Soybean cyst nematode


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