Volatiles of bacterial antagonists inhibit mycelial growth of the plant pathogen Rhizoctonia solani

Arch Microbiol. 2007 May;187(5):351-60. doi: 10.1007/s00203-006-0199-0. Epub 2006 Dec 16.


Bacterial antagonists are bacteria that negatively affect the growth of other organisms. Many antagonists inhibit the growth of fungi by various mechanisms, e.g., secretion of lytic enzymes, siderophores and antibiotics. Such inhibition of fungal growth may indirectly support plant growth. Here, we demonstrate that small organic volatile compounds (VOCs) emitted from bacterial antagonists negatively influence the mycelial growth of the soil-borne phytopathogenic fungus Rhizoctonia solani Kühn. Strong inhibitions (99-80%) under the test conditions were observed with Stenotrophomonas maltophilia R3089, Serratia plymuthica HRO-C48, Stenotrophomonas rhizophila P69, Serratia odorifera 4Rx13, Pseudomonas trivialis 3Re2-7, S. plymuthica 3Re4-18 and Bacillus subtilis B2g. Pseudomonas fluorescens L13-6-12 and Burkholderia cepacia 1S18 achieved 30% growth reduction. The VOC profiles of these antagonists, obtained through headspace collection and analysis on GC-MS, show different compositions and complexities ranging from 1 to almost 30 compounds. Most volatiles are species-specific, but overlapping volatile patterns were found for Serratia spp. and Pseudomonas spp. Many of the bacterial VOCs could not be identified for lack of match with mass-spectra of volatiles in the databases.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / chemistry
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Antibiosis*
  • Antifungal Agents / metabolism
  • Antifungal Agents / pharmacology
  • Bacteria / drug effects*
  • Bacteria / growth & development
  • Organic Chemicals
  • Pest Control, Biological
  • Plant Diseases / microbiology*
  • Rhizoctonia / drug effects*
  • Rhizoctonia / growth & development
  • Rhizoctonia / metabolism
  • Volatilization


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Antifungal Agents
  • Organic Chemicals