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Unveiling the Abundance and Composition of Rhizobacterial Communities Associated with Halophytic Plants in Gujarat, India
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  • Kratika Nigam,
  • Shital Padhiyar,
  • Shraddha Bhatt,
  • Jasmin Kheni,
  • Ashish Vala,
  • Riddhi Rajyaguru,
  • Rukam Singh Tomar
Kratika Nigam
Junagadh Agricultural University
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Shital Padhiyar
Junagadh Agricultural University
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Shraddha Bhatt
Junagadh Agricultural University
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Jasmin Kheni
Junagadh Agricultural University
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Ashish Vala
Junagadh Agricultural University
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Riddhi Rajyaguru
Junagadh Agricultural University
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Rukam Singh Tomar
Junagadh Agricultural University

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Abstract

Halophytes are a group of plants that possess the ability to withstand a broad range of salinity levels, extending even beyond the concentration found in seawater. Soil salinity can indirectly impact plant development but this effect can be minimized by the activities of beneficial bacteria residing in the rhizosphere of halophytic plants. This research undertaking employed next-generation sequencing technology to examine the rhizobacteria associated with the roots of five distinct halophytic plant species. By utilizing 16S rRNA gene amplification, the findings unveiled the prevalence of bacterial members belonging to the phyla Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Igvanibacteriae, Chloroflexi, Nitrospirae, Cyanobacteria, and Firmicutes, with Proteobacteria being the most abundant phylum. Furthermore, a comparative analysis was conducted to explore the existence of diverse bacterial communities associated with halophytic plants at the species, genus, and family levels. This study conducted in the Saurashtra region of Gujarat offers valuable insights into the species that contribute to the maintenance of biogeochemical cycles within the ecosystem. Additionally, it facilitates the identification of plant growth-promoting, halotolerant bacteria, which can potentially enhance the salinity tolerance of non-halophytic crops. Notably, this study represents the first metagenomic investigation conducted on the rhizosphere of any halophytic plant species from the Gujarat region of India.