Background and Objectives
Isolation of Xanthomonas campestris from soil has a wide range of applications from monitoring of phytopathogenic populations in soil to screening of improved xanthan-producing strains. Identification of Xanthomonas campestris and its pathovars requires pathogenicity tests in addition to phenotypic and molecular characterization.
Materials and Methods
Thirty phenotypic tests were carried out on 57 yellow-pigmented bacterial isolates obtained from soil of cabbage farms after screening on Selective Xanthomonas (SX) agar and transferring on Yeast Malt agar. Absorption spectra of pigments and capability of biopolymer production were determined for the isolates. Some characteristics of the biopolymer produced and presence of a X. campestris-specific gene marker were investigated for nine putative X. campestris isolates.
The present study introduces a set of simple phenotypic tests including urease, acid production from sucrose, mucoid growth on 5% sucrose, starch hydrolysis, growth in 4% NaCl, motility and utilization of asparagine as sole carbon and nitrogen source for quick and inexpensive tentative identification of Xanthomonas campestris. Validation of these tests was confirmed in 100% of the cases by characterization of bacterial exopolysaccharide as xanthan and production of genus-specific xanthomonadin pigment. Moreover, tracking of hrc gene among putative X. campestris isolates gave positive results in 80% of cases.
The Minimal simple phenotypic tests facilitate the screening and differentiation of putative X. campestris isolates from other false bacterial strains isolated from soil on semiselective SX agar.