Molecular Characterization of Fungal Rhizosphere Community of Soya Beans (Glycine max (L.) Merril) and Their In Vitro Antagonistic Activity


  • Chiemeka N. Onaebi Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Nneka V. Chiejina Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Dandy A. Osibe Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Faustina N. Ugwuja Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Nigeria.
  • Augusta C. Okoro Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Christopher C. Onyeke Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Angela N. Amujiri Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Kingsley O. Omeje Department of Biochemistry, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Hyacinth C. Obayi Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
  • Emmanuel G. Njoku Department of Plant Science and Biotechnology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria


Soya beans, Rhizosphere, Fungi, Biological control, Antagonism


Rhizosphere fungal community play a crucial role in the development and productivity of plants. Microscopic fungi have shown considerable promise for root pathogen control, which calls for knowledge of their colonization and distribution in the rhizosphere. Herein, studies on the funga community associated with the soya bean rhizosphere and their in vitro antagonistic activity were studied. Soya bean seeds were planted and soils collected from the rhizospheric region at maturity for fungal isolation. Molecular characterisation verified the isolates' identification based on their macroscopic and microscopic characteristics. DNA were extracted from the fungi and PCR amplification of the ITS gene region were performed. Dual culture technique was used to screen for fungal antagonism. Eighteen fungi comprising of Aspergillus niger , A. fumigatus , A. flavus , A. tamari, A. hortai , A. nidulans, A. arcoverdensis, Rhizopus delemar, Penicillium pinophilum, Paecilomyces lilacinus, Blastobotrys proliferans, Talaromyces pinophilus, Neosartorya fischeri, Botrytis cinerea, Mucor micheli, Fusarium oxysporum, Helminthosporium solani, andTrichoderma asperellum were isolated from the rhizosphere of soya beans. The most predominant species in the plant rhizosphere was A. niger and the least abundant species was A. fumigatus. T. asperellum exhibited in-vitro antagonistic activity against all the isolates except R. delemar. These inhibitory effects ranged from 7.83 to 83.88% for the isolates tested. Interestingly, B. cinerea was found to be more susceptible to T. asperellum antagonism compared to other isolates tested. Thus, this study suggests that soya bean rhizosphere harbours diverse fungal communities that could be explored for preventing plant infections using biological means. 


Kirk JL, Beaudette LA, Hart M, Moutoglis P, Klironomos JN, Lee H, Trevors JT. Methods of studying soil microbialdiversity. J Microbiol Methods. 2004; 58:169-188.

Prescott LM, Harley JP, Klein DA. The epidemiology of infectious disease. In: Microbiology. Prescott LM, Harley JP, Klein DA(Eds). McGraw-Hill, New York, USA; 2005. 821-


Dawar S, Batool M, Tariq M, Zaki MJ. Mycoflora in the rhizosphere of some wild plants around Karachi University Campus. Pak J Bot. 2014; 46(1):369-373.

Sule IO, Oyeyiola GP. Fungi in the rhizosphere and rhizoplane of cassava cultivar TME 419. Inter J. Appl Bio Res. 2012; 4:18 – 30.

Philippot L, Raaijmakers JM, Lemanceau P, Vander WH. Going back to the roots: The microbial ecology of the rhizosphere. Nat. Rev Microbiol. 2013; 11: 789-799.

Sylvia D, Fuhrmann J, Hartel P, Zuberer D. Principles and Applications of Soil Microbiology, Pearson Education Inc. New Jersey; 2005.

Al-Saeedi SS, Al-Ani BM. Study of Antagonistic Capability of Trichoderma harzianum Isolates against some Pathogenic Soil Borne Fungi. Agric Biol J. North Amer. 2014; 1:15-23.

Zin NA, Badaluddin NA. Biological function. of Trichoderma spp for agricultural applications. Annl Agric Sci. 2020; 65:168-178.

Raaijmakers JM, Leeman M, Van Oorschot MP, Van der Sluis I, Schippers B, Bakker PA. Dose-response relationships in biological control of Fusarium wilt of radish

by Pseudomonas spp. Phytopathol. 1995; 85:1075-1081.

Haram S, Schickler H, Oppenheim A, Chet I. Differential expression of Trichoderma harzianum chitinases during mycoparasitism. Phytopathol. 1996; 86:980- 985.

Raaijmakers JM, de Bruijn I, de Kock MJ. Cyclic lipopeptide production by plant-associated Pseudomonas species: diversity, activity, biosynthesis and regulation. Mol PltMicrobe Inter. 2006; 321: 341-361.

Harman GE, Petzoldt R, Comis A, Chen J. Interactions between Trichoderma harzianum strain T22 and maize inbred line Mo17 and effects of these interactions on diseasescaused by Pythium ultimum and Colletotrichum graminicola.

Phytopathol. 2004; 94:147-153.

Verma M, Brar SK, Tyagi, RD, Surampalli, RY, Valero, JR. Antagonistic fungi, Trichoderma spp.: Panoply of biological control. Biochem Engn J. 2007; 37:1-20

Uguru MI, Oyiga BC, Jandong EA. Response of some soybean genotypes to different soil pH regimes in two planting seasons. Afr J. Plt Sci Biotech. 2012; 6:26-37.

Dugje IY, Omoigui LO, Ekeleme F., Bandyopadhyay R, Lava KP, Kamara AY. Farmers’ Guide to Soybean Production in Northern Nigeria. IITA, Ibadan, Nigeria;

21 p

Oyeyiola GP. Rhizosphere mycoflora of okra (Hibiscus esculentus). Res J. Soil Biol. 2009; 1: 31-36.

Vibhute AD, Kale KV, Mehrotra SC, Dhumal RK, Nagne AD. Determination of soil physicochemical attributes in farming sites through visible, near-infrared diffuse

reflectance spectroscopy and PLSR modeling. Ecol Proc. 2018; 7:26

Eze CS, Amadi JE. Studies on rhizosphere and rhizoplane microflora of Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill) seedlings. Inter J. Engn Sci Res. 2014; 3 (7): 666-672.

Shivanna MB, Vasanthakumari MM. Temporal and spatial variability of rhizosphere and rhizoplane fungal communities in grasses of the subfamily Chloridoideae in the Lakkavalli

region of the Western Ghats in India. Mycosph. 2011; 2: 255-271.

Ogunleye AO, Ayansola OT. Studies of some isolated rotcausing mycoflora of yams (Dioscorea spp). Amer J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2014; 1: 9-20.

Barnett HL, Hunter BB. Illustrated Genera of Imperfect Fungi. The American Phytopathological Society, St. Paul, Minnosta, USA; 1999. 218 p.

Alexopoulos CJ, Mins CN, Blackwell M. Introductory Mycology. John Wiley and Sons Singapore; 2002. 869 p.

Agrios GN. Plant Pathology. Academic Press, New York; 2005. 922 p.

Ellis D, Davis S, Alexious H, Handke R, Bartley R. Descriptions of Medical Fungi. Mycology Unit Women Hospital North Adelaide, Australia; 2007. 198 p.

Srideepthi R, Lakshmisahitya U, Peddakasim D, Suneetha P, Krishna M. Morphological, Pathological and Molecular Diversity of Colletotrichum capsici inciting fruit rot in chilli(Capsicum annuum L.). Res J Biotech. 2017; 12:14-21.

Devi TR, Chhetry GK. Rhizosphere and non-rhizosphere microbial population dynamics and their effect on wilt causing pathogen of pigeon pea. Inter J. Sci Res Pub. 2012;


Mallikarjuna M, Gowdu BJ. Isolation, identification and in vitro screening of rhizospheric fungi for biological control of

Macrophomina phaseolina. Asian J Plt Pathol. 2015; 9: 175-188.

Kellogg CE. Soil. In: Bayer P, Feinberg B, Tantillo MD, Towers VF, Cole BL, Peckaitis CM, Tench HG (eds). The Encydopedia Americana, Vol. 25, Grolier Incorporated,

Danbury, Connecticut; 1998. 176-186 p.

International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA). Farmers’ guide to soybean production in Northern Nigeria. IITA, Ibadan, Nigeria; 2009. 21 p.

Baker S. Aspergillus niger genomics: Past, Present and into the future. Med Mycol. 2006; 44: 17-21.

Olahan GS, Sule IO, Garuba T, Salawu YA. Rhizosphere and Non-Rhizosphere Soil mycoflora of Corchorus olitorius (Jute). Sci World J. 2016; 11: 23-26.

Cavaglieri L, Orlando J, Etcheverry M. Rhizosphere microbial community structure at different maize plant growth stages and root locations. Microbiol Res. 2007; 164

(4): 391 – 399.

Bhat PR, Kaveriappa KM. Rhizoplane mycoflora of some species of Myristicaceae of the Western Ghats, India. Inter Society Trop Ecol. 2012; 52: 163-175.

Bharti M, Pravesh R. Studies on the rhizosphere and nonrhizosphere mycoflora of Lygodium flexuosum (L.) Sw. and Ampelopteris prolifera (Retz.) copel of Ranchi district of

Jharkhand. Inter Quarterly J. Environ Sci. 2012; 1: 61-68.

Olanrewaju SO, Akinro EB, Oladipupo OA. Fungal colonization of the Rhizoplane of okra (Hibiscus esculentus) plant. J. Environ Sci, Toxicol Food Technol. 2014; 8: 2319-

David OM, Olawusi AC, Oluwole OA, Adeola PO, Odeyemi AT. Isolation, Molecular Characterization and Application of Aspergillus niger and Penicillium chrysogenum with

Biofertilizer Potentials to Enhance Rice Growth. Trop. J. Natr. Prod. Res. 2023; 7(4): 2790-2795.

Ganley AR, Kobayashi T. Highly efficient concerted evolution in the ribosomal DNA repeats. Total rDNA repeat variation revealed by whole-genome sequence data. Gene

Res. 2007; 17:184-191.

Abdel-Hafez SI, Ismail MA, Hussein NA, Abdel-Hameed NA. Fusaria and other fungi taxa associated with rhizosphere and rhizoplane of Lentil and Sesame at different growth

stages. Acta Mycologic. 2012; 47: 35-48.

Abdel-Nasser AZ, Elkhateeb WA, Mazen MB, Hashem M, Daba GM. Survey of all mycobiota associated with rhizosphere and rhizoplane of different cultivated plants in

new reclaimed soil, upper Egypt, and examination of the most common fungal isolates to produce mycotoxins. Egyptian Pharm J. 2016; 13: 64-70.

Sharma R, Rajak RC, Pandey AK. Evidence of antagonistic interactions between rhizosphere and mycorrhizal fungi associated with Dendrocalamus strictus (Bamboo). J Yeast

and Fungal Res. 2010; 1:112-117.

Ozbay N, Newman SE. Biological control with Trichoderma spp. with emphasis on T. harzianum. Park J Biol Sci. 2004; 7:478-484.

Mujeebur KR, Shahana MK, Mohiddin FA. Biological control of Fusarium wilt of chickpea through seed treatment with the commercial formulation of Trichoderma harzianum

and or Pseudomonas fluorescens. Phytopathol Mediterr. 2004; 43: 20-25.



How to Cite

Onaebi, C. N., Chiejina, N. V., Osibe, D. A., Ugwuja, F. N., Okoro, A. C., Onyeke, C. C., … Njoku, E. G. (2023). Molecular Characterization of Fungal Rhizosphere Community of Soya Beans (Glycine max (L.) Merril) and Their In Vitro Antagonistic Activity: Tropical Journal of Natural Product Research (TJNPR), 7(7), 3509–3516. Retrieved from