Taxonomic and functional characteristics of aerobic bacteria isolated from the chloragogenous tissue of the earthworm Aporrectodea molleri

Houida S., Yakkou L., Bilen S. , Raouane M., El Harti A., Amghar S.

ARCHIVES OF MICROBIOLOGY, vol.203, no.8, pp.4805-4812, 2021 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 203 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s00203-021-02396-2
  • Page Numbers: pp.4805-4812
  • Keywords: Earthworms, Aerobic bacteria, Chloragogenous tissue, Plant growth promotion, Heavy metals, EISENIA-FOETIDA, GUT MICROFLORA, IDENTIFICATION


Earthworms are considered as a rich microhabitat for the growth and proliferation of diverse soil microorganisms. Hence, earthworms' associated bacteria attracted interest due to their high metabolic profiles and benefits to soil fertility and plant growth. In this study, we aimed to isolate for the first-time aerobic bacteria present in the chloragogenous tissue of the earthworm Apporectodea molleri and test their Plant Growth-Promoting abilities and their resistance to heavy metals (Mn, Zn, Cu, Cd, and Ni). The 16S rRNA gene sequencing revealed the affiliation of the fifteen isolates to six main bacterial genera: Enterobacter, Citrobacter, Aeromonas, Pseudomonas, Bacillus, Terribacillus. These strains displayed different plant growth promoting traits (e.g., indole-3-acetic acid IAA, siderophores, nitrogen fixation, phosphate, and potassium solubilization), in addition, they were able to resist differently to heavy metals. Bacillus strains were most effective as three strains, namely B. subtilis strain TC34; B. circulans strain TC7 and Bacillus sp. strain TC10, were positive to all PGP traits and resisted to all heavy metals. This study illustrates the potential of bacteria from the chloragogenous tissue to exhibit multiple properties, which can be related to the functional feature of this tissue to stock metabolites and neutralize toxic elements.