Home > Past Issue

Volume: 3, Issue: 6, Nov-Dec, 2015
DOI: 10.7324/JABB.2015.3601

Research Article

Identification of diazotrophic nostocalean cyanobacteria of north eastern region of India and evaluation for nitrogenase activity and extracellular ammonium excretion

Gunapati Oinam, Wangkhem Indira, O. Avijeet Singh, Th. Indrama, K. Ojit Singh, Laxmipriya Koijam, Chungkham Silvia, A. Subhalaxmi Sharma, Romi Khangembam, Minerva Shamjetshabam, A. Thadoi, K. Sarabati


In this study, morphological and microscopic observations were performed along with growth measurements, evaluation of extracellular ammonium and nitrogenase activity. A total of 62 diazotrophic nostocalean cyanobacteria belonging to 12 genera viz- Scytonema (2), Anabaena (22), Nostoc (17), Cylindrospermum (2), Anabaenopsis (1), Dichothrix (1), Tolypothrix (2), Calothrix (6), Aulosira (4), Microchaete (3), Wollea (1) and Rivularia (1) which were originally isolated from different niches of north east India were procured from National fresh water cyanobacterial and microalgal repository of DBT-IBSD, Imphal, Manipur, India. Among the different nostocalean cyanobacteria encountered from the various habitats, Anabaena sp. BTA650, an isolate from lithophytes under running water, Moreh, Chandel, Manipur exhibited highest nitrogenase activity of 111.08±13.26 nmole C2H4 µg-1 Chl-a h-1 can be a potential candidate for biofertilizer formulation particularly for terraced hill rice culture condition.

Keywords: Diazotrophs, cyanobacteria, nitrogenase activity, extracellular ammonium, repository, biofertilizer.


1. Hayes PK, El Semary NA, Sanchez-Baracaldo P. The taxonomy of cyanobacteria: Molecular insights into a difficult problem. In: Brodie J, Lewis J. editors. Unravelling the algae: The past, present and future of algal systematics, CRC Press/Taylor, Francis Group: Boca Raton; 2007, p. 93-101.

2. Rasmussen B, Fletcher IR, Brocks JJ, Kilburn MR. Reassessing the first appearance of eukaryotes and cyanobacteria, Nature. 2008; 455: 1101-1104.

3. Schaeffer DJ, Krylov VS. Anti-HIV activity of extracts and compounds from algae and cyanobacteria, Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety. 2000; 45: 208-227.

4. Rastogi RP, Sinha RP. Biotechnological and industrial significance of cyanobacterial secondary metabolites, Biotechnology Advances. 2009; 27: 521-539.

5. Castenholz RW, Waterbury JB. Oxygenic photosynthetic bacteria, group I. Cyanobacteria. In: Staley JT, Bryant MP, Pfennig N, Holt JG, editors. Bergey's manual of systematic bacteriology, Williams and Wilkins Co.: Baltimore; 1989, p. 1710-1728.

6. Komarek J, Anagnostidis K. Modern approach to the classification system of Cyanophytes, 4: Nostocales. Archiv fur Hydrobiologie Algological Studies. 82(3/56): 247-345.

7. Singh RN. Role of blue-green algae in nitrogen economy of Indian agriculture. New Delhi: Indian Council of Agricultural Research; 1961.

8. Venkataraman GS. Blue-green algae: A possible remedy to nitrogen scarcity. Current Science. 1981a; 50: 253-256.

9. Song T, Martensson L, Eriksson T, Zheng W, Rasmussen U. Biodiversity and seasonal variation of the cyanobacterial assemblage in a rice paddy field in Fujian, China. FEMS Microbiology Ecology. 2005; 54: 131-140.

10. Valerio E, Chambel L, Paulino S, Faria N, Pereira P, Tenreiro R. Molecular identification, typing and traceability of cyanobacteria from freshwater reservoir. Microbiology. 2009; 155: 642-656.

11. Kumari N, Srivastava AK, Bhargava P, Rai LC. Molecular approaches towards assessment of cyanobacterial biodiversity. African Journal of Biotechnology. 2009; 8(18): 4284-4298.

12. Tiwari, ON, Singh HT. Biodiversity of cyanobacteria in Loktak lake and rice fields of Manipur, India having acidic properties. Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences India. 2005; 75: 209-213.

13. Devi SD, Indrama T, Tiwari ON. Biodiversity analysis and reproductive/ cultural behaviour of cyanobacteria of north east region of India having acidic properties. International Journal of Plant Reproductive Biology. 2010; 2: 127-135.

14. Syiem MB, Nongbri BB, Pinokiyo A, Bhattacharjee A, Nongrum NA, Hynniewta L. Significance of cyanobacterial diversity in different ecological conditions of Meghalaya, India. Journal of Applied and Natural Science. 2010; 2(1): 134-139.

15. Oinam G, Singh AO, Tiwari ON. An account of heterocystous Nostocalean cyanobacterial biodiversity of Manipur, India. Journal of Indian Botanical Society. 2011; 90(1 & 2): 45-59.</P>16. Singh KO, Oinam G, Tiwari ON. New record of potential cyanobacteria from India region falling Indo-Burma biodiversity hotspots (north-east region of India) and partial characterization for value additions. Philippine Journal of Science. 2012; 141(1): 57-66.

17. Stanier RY, Kunisawa R, Mandel M, Cohen-Bazire G. Purification and properties of unicellular blue-green algae (order Chroococcales). Bacteriological Reviews. 1971; 35: 171-205.

18. Desikachary TV. Cyanophyta. New Delhi: Indian Council of Agricultural Research; 1959.

19. Castenholz RW. Oxygenic photosynthetic bacteria. In: Boone DR, Castenholz RW, Garrity GM, editors. The archaea and the deeply branching and phototrophic bacteria, Bergey's manual of systematic bacteriology. 2nd ed. New York: Springer-Verlag; 2001, p. 473-600.

20. Solorzano L. Determination of ammonia in natural waters by the phenol hypochlorite method. Limnology and Oceanography. 1969; 4: 799-801.

21. Hardy RFW, Burns RL, Holsten RD. Applications of the acetylene-reduction assay for measurement of nitrogen fixation. Soil Biology and Biochemistry. 1973; 5: 47-81.

22. Mckinney G. Absorption of light by chlorophyll solution. Journal of Biological Chemistry. 1941; 140: 315-322.

23. Syiem MB, Hynniewta L, Pinokiyo A. Nostoc cyanobiont in the cyanolichen, Sticta weigelii of eastern Himalayan region: Isolation, physiological and biochemical characterization. Journal of Experimental Sciences. 2011; 2(9): 36-40.

24. Bhattacharya J, Singh AK, Rai AN. Nitrogen nutrition in the cyanobacterium Nostoc ANTH, a symbiotic isolate from Anthoceros: Uptake and assimilation of inorganic -N and amino acid. Indian Journal of Biochemistry and Biophysics. 2002; 39: 163-169.

25. Bergman B, Gallon JR, Rai AN, Stal LJ. Nitrogen fixation by non-heterocystous cyanobacteria. FEMS Microbiology Review. 1997; 19: 139-185.

26. Aluwalia AS, Kumar HD. Pattern of akinete differentiation in the blue-green alga Nostoc sp. Beitrage zur Biologie der Pflanzen. 1982b; 57: 459-467.

27. Turner S. Molecular systematics of oxygenic photosynthetic bacteria. Plant Systematic and Evolution. [Suppl.] 1997; 11: 13-52.

28. Venkataraman GS. Blue-green algae for rice production. FAO Soil Bulletin. 1981b; 16: 33-42.

29. Nayak S, Prasanna R, Dominic TK, Singh PK. Effect of BGA- Azolla biofertilizers on nitrogen fixation and chlorophyll accumulation at different depths in soil cores. Biology and Fertility of Soils. 2004; 40: 67-72.

30. Mandal R, Tahmida Begum ZN, Khan AUM, Hossin MZ. N2-fixing blue-green algae in rice fields and their relationship with soil fertility. Bangladesh Journal of Botany. 1993; 22: 73-79.

31. Roger PA, Santiago-Ardales S, Reddy PM, Watanabe I. The abundance of heterocystous blue-green algae in rice fields and inocula used for application in rice fields. Biology and Fertility of Soils. 1987; 5: 98-105.

32. Amma PA, Aiyer RS, Subramanian N. Occurrence of blue-green algae in acid soils in Kerala. Agricultural Research Journal of Kerala. 1966; 4: 141-142.

33. Bastia AK, Satapathy DP, Adhikari SP. Heterotrophic growth of several filamentous blue-green algae. Algological Studies. 1993; 70: 65-70.

34. Whitton BA. Diversity, ecology and taxonomy of the cyanobacteria. In: Mann NH, Carr NG, editors. Photosynthetic prokaryotes, New York: Plenum Press; 1992, p. 1-52.

35. Venkataraman GS. The role of blue-green algae in tropical rice cultivation. In: Stewart WDP, editor. Nitrogen fixation by free living micro-organism. United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press; 1975, p. 207-218.

36. Berman-Frank I, Lundgren P, Falkowski P. Nitrogen fixation and photosynthetic oxygen evolution in cyanobacteria. Research Microbiology. 2003; 154, 157-164.

37. Diez B, Bergman B, El-Shehawy R. Marine diazotrophic cyanobacteria: out of the blue. Plant Biotechnology. 2009; 25: 221-225.

38. Short SM, Zehr JP. Quantitative analysis of nifH genes and transcripts from aquatic environments. In: Leadbetter J, editor. Methods in Enzymology: Environmental Microbiology, Elsevier; 2005, p. 380-394.

39. Welker M, von Dohren H. Cyanobacterial peptides-nature's own combinatorial biosynthesis. FEMS Microbiology Reviews. 2006; 30(4): 530-563.

How to cite this article:
Oinam G, Indira W, Singh OA, Indrama T, Singh KO, Koijam L, Silvia C, Sharma AS, Khangembam R, Shamjetshabam M, Thadoi A, Sarabati K, Bidyababy T and Tiwari ON. Identification of diazotrophic nostocalean cyanobacteria of north eastern region of India and evaluation for nitrogenase activity and extracellular ammonium excretion. J App Biol Biotech, 2015; 3 (06): 001-008. DOI: 10.7324/JABB.2015.3601