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Title: Understanding rice and soil phosphorus interactions with an emphasis on rice genetics and soil microbes
Author: Alogaidi, Faez Fayad Mohammed
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2013
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Rice is the staple food for nearly one half of the ever growing world's population. Phosphorus (P) deficiency commonly constrains crop productivity on a large area of arable land worldwide. P fertilizer is a finite resource and an expensive input, so it must be used efficiently. The main objective of this study was to investigate plant and soil P interaction in P deficient conditions and understand plant mechanisms that could enhance P uptake efficiency throughout two main research approaches: Firstly, investigating plant and soil microbes' interaction that promotes plant growth in Plimited conditions. Secondly, evaluating the P uptake efficiency of a number of rice genotypes in a high throughput screening systems in order to understand genotypic variations in P uptake mechanisms. The genotypes used were genotyped for the allelic variation in the Pup1 locus and the effect of this QTL on the plant growth was also investigated. In an experiment investigating the influence of soil microbes on rice growth in P deficient conditions, an experimental system where pots were filled with a mix of 95% low P Insch subsoil and 5% Insch topsoil, where the subsoil was sterilized by autoclaving and the top soil was either sterilized or live. Non-autoclaved (live) topsoil caused a significant increase in shoot dry weight (SDW) for IAC 25 compared to autoclaved soil while the opposite was true for Azucena suggesting that the presence of soil microbes is needed for IAC 25 to access soil-bound P under P-limiting condition while for Azucena it is not. Most importantly, a very strong cultivar x treatment interactions on almost all growth parameters and elements in the shoot except for Mn were found. In a dose experiment investigating whether there is a general toxic effect for autoclaving Insch topsoil being used in this study on the growth of IAC 25, a strong positive correlations of plant growth parameters with the percentage of sterile topsoil vi levels were observed indicating that the autoclaved topsoil was not toxic. The influence of soil wash (distilled water added to the soil then extracted) and different types of soil as sources of inocula on the plant growth of rice cultivars were also studied. Soil wash inoculation did not affected plant growth but soil inocula increased the biomass of all rice cultivars (Azucena, IAC 25 and Lemont) tested suggesting that if it is microbes that are important they must be remaining in the soil and are not transferable by washing. Two autoclaved soils did not behave similarly in terms of affecting plant growth of rice cultivars (Azucena and IAC 25). Moreover, the live treatment of a new soil stimulated the growth of both cultivars and the cultivar x treatment interaction that was found in earlier experiment was lost with the use of this new soil. The implication is that the cultivar by autoclave treatment interaction is soil specific. The fluctuating results between the experiments indicate that it is unlikely that such studies can be extended into plant genetics. So, the second approach of the study focused on examining simpler plant/soil P interaction in P limiting conditions. A 25/75% subsoil/sand mix was determined as a P deficient and used to screen 30 rice genotypes in two experiments: the first when watered with Yoshida's nutrient solution (YNS) either with (YNS+P) or without P (YNS-P) to assess whether rice genotypes differ in extracting P added in liquid form while the second was designed to test if shallow and deep-rooted genotypes differ in extracting P present in soil by using rock phosphate in three treatments: when rock P was absent or embedded either in a shallow 10 cm layer or distributed homogenously in soil mix. For both experiments, P treatment x genotype interaction was significant on SDW. On average, YNS-P treatment significantly reduced the SDW for genotypes compared to that of plants grown in YNS+P treatment while the addition of rock phosphate greatly stimulated plant growth where SDW of plants grown in homogenous P and shallow P significantly outgrew vii those in zero P treatment. In both experiments, rice from the aus subgroup grown in -P treatment accumulated significantly more SDW than indica and japonica genotypes. In -P treatment, the genotypes that accumulated higher SDW relative to the others were Black Gora, Rayada, Kasalath, Azucena, IAC 25, Dom Sufid, Aux1Wild type, FR 13A and especially Sadu Cho. In the rock phosphate experiment, both P treatment and genotype affected RDW and root/shoot ratio significantly. Most importantly, two root angle traits (the mean root direction and the weighted average of the unsigned root angles) measured in rhizotrons were correlated with the relative SDW in shallow P (SDW in shallow P/SDW in zero P) slightly stronger than with relative SDW in homogenous P (SDW in homogenous P/SDW in zero P) indicating that the relationship between plant growth and root distribution with depth was altered by the distribution of rock phosphate in soil. In both experiments, the presence of Kasalath alleles in the Pup1 QTL significantly increased SDW of the genotypes. However, some genotypes, especially Dom Sufid and Sadu Cho performed well in these experiments despite lacking the Pup1 allele suggesting that Pup1 QTL is not the only determinant for tolerance to P deficiency. The system appears to be suitable for high throughput screens of rice genotypes.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Rice ; Soils