Phenotypic diversity and biochemical characteristics of selected rhizobia nodulating the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.)


  • Saoussen Kouki Laboratory of Agronomic Sciences and Technology, National Institute of Agronomic Research of Tunisia (INRAT). University of Carthage. Tunis, Tunisia.
  • Boulbaba L’taief Biology Department, College of Sciences, King Khalid University, P.O. Box 960, Abha, Saudi Arabia.
  • Rahamh Al-Qthanin Biology Department, College of Sciences, King Khalid University, P.O. Box 960, Abha, Saudi Arabia.
  • Mustapha Rouissi Applied Biotechnology Laboratory, National Institute of Agronomic Research of Tunisia (INRAT). University of Carthage. Tunis, Tunisia.
  • Bouaziz Sifi Laboratory of Agronomic Sciences and Technology, National Institute of Agronomic Research of Tunisia (INRAT). University of Carthage. Tunis, Tunisia.



Biodiversity, Rhizobium, salinity, temperature


Increasing interest in using rhizobia as biofertilizers in smallholder agricultural farming systems has prompted scientists to investigate rhizobia diversity, resulting in the identification of many strains. Fifty-five Rhizobium strains nodulating in the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) were isolated from soil samples from different areas of Tunisia and phenotypically characterized to determine their symbiotic nitrogen fixation capabilities. Their tolerance to pH, salinity, temperature and alkalinity, as well as their cultural and biochemical characteristics indicated wide physiological diversity. These phenotypic characteristics significantly affected rhizobia growth, and strains of interest were identified and used in inoculation trials. They were efficient and able to tolerate pH from 4 to 9, NaCl concentrations of 25 to 100 mM, temperature variation from 10 to 40 °C, and lime (CaCO3) from 0.05 to 0.20 mM.  Selected Rhizobium strains were identified as candidates for biofertilizer production for a variety of Tunisian soil types.


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How to Cite

Kouki, S., L’taief, B., Al-Qthanin, R., Rouissi, M., & Sifi, B. (2021). Phenotypic diversity and biochemical characteristics of selected rhizobia nodulating the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). Bioagro, 34(1), 15-26.