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International Journal of Microbiology
Volume 2016, Article ID 5472601, 11 pages
Research Article

Phosphate Solubilization Potential of Rhizosphere Fungi Isolated from Plants in Jimma Zone, Southwest Ethiopia

1Animal Products Veterinary Drugs and Feed Quality Control Assessment Center, P.O. Box 31303, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
2Department of Biology, Jimma University, P.O. Box 5140, Jimma, Ethiopia
3Environmental Biotechnology Unit, Addis Ababa University, P.O. Box 1176, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Received 26 May 2016; Accepted 2 August 2016

Academic Editor: Giuseppe Comi

Copyright © 2016 Firew Elias et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Phosphorus (P) is one of the major bioelements limiting agricultural production. Phosphate solubilizing fungi play a noteworthy role in increasing the bioavailability of soil phosphates for plants. The present study was aimed at isolating and characterizing phosphate solubilizing fungi from different rhizospheres using both solid and liquid Pikovskaya (PVK) medium. A total of 359 fungal isolates were obtained from 150 rhizosphere soil samples of haricot bean, faba bean, cabbage, tomato, and sugarcane. Among the isolates, 167 (46.52%) solubilized inorganic phosphate. The isolated phosphate solubilizing fungi belonged to genera of Aspergillus (55.69%), Penicillium spp. (23.35%), and Fusarium (9.58%). Solubilization index (SI) ranged from 1.10 to 3.05. Isolates designated as JUHbF95 (Aspergillus sp.) and JUFbF59 (Penicillium sp.) solubilized maximum amount of P 728.77 μg·mL−1 and 514.44 μg mL−1, respectively, from TCP (tricalcium phosphate) after 15 days of incubation. The highest (363 μg mL−1) soluble-P was released from RP with the inoculation of JUHbF95 in the PVK broth after 10 days of incubation. The present study indicated the presence of diverse plant associated P-solubilizing fungi that may serve as potential biofertilizers.