Surface characteristics of Azospirillum brasilense in relation to cell aggregation and attachment to plant roots

Saul Burdman, Yaacov Okon*, Edouard Jurkevitch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

106 Scopus citations


The free-living bacteria of the genus Azospirillum live in close association with plant roots and represent one of the best-characterized plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). The attachment of Azospirillum to the roots is essential for the establishment of an efficient association with the host plant. Azospirillum cells are able to aggregate under certain environmental conditions, leading to the formation of bacterial flocs. The bacterial surface plays an important role in the establishment of the bacteria-plant association as well as in the bacterial aggregation and data suggesting the involvement of extracellular polysaccharides and proteins in these phenomena have been published. This review summarizes the current knowledge on the involvement of surface components in the adhesion processes of Azospirillum. Emphasis is placed on A. brasilense, the species that has been the subject of most studies in the Azospirillum genus.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)91-110
Number of pages20
JournalCritical Reviews in Microbiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors wish to express their sincere appreciation to Prof. Jos Vanderleyden and to Prof. Rene De Mot from the F. A. Janssens Laboratory of Genetics (The Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium) for their extensive cooperation in our research project on the aggregation of Azospirillum brasilense. This research is being supported by “The Israel Science Foundation” founded by “The Academy of Sciences and Humanities.


  • Aggregation
  • Azospirillum
  • Azospirillum brasilense
  • Flocculation
  • Root attachment


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