Diversity of Culturable Bacteria from Endemic Medicinal Plants of the Highlands of the Province of Parinacota, Chile

Daniel Moraga, Katina Latorre, Patricio Muñoz-Torres, Steffany Cárdenas, Alan Jofré-Quispe, José López-Cepeda, Luis Bustos, Cristóbal Balada, María Fernanda Argaluza, Pablo González, Leda Guzmán

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Endemic medicinal plants that grow at altitudes in northern Chile have been traditionally used for therapeutic applications by Aymara doctors. Several studies have analyzed the biological properties of these plants for therapeutic purposes. The aim was to characterize at molecular and biochemical levels the bacteria that live in the rhizosphere and roots from endemic medicinal plants that grow between 3681–5104 m.a.s.l. in the province of Parinacota. Thirty-nine bacteria were isolated from nine medicinal plants under our laboratory conditions. These bacteria were characterized by Gram stain, hydrolase production, plant-growth promotion, anti-fungal and antibacterial activities, and 16S rDNA sequencing. A phylogenetic study revealed the presence of three major phyla, Actinomycetota (46.2%), Bacillota (43.6%), and Pseudomonadota (10.3%). The rhizobacteria strains associated with the Aymara medicinal plant exhibited several interesting biological activities, such as hydrolytic enzymes, plant-growth-promoting traits, and antibacterial and antifungal properties, indicating their potential for developing new bio-based products for agricultural or clinical applications. These results are promising and highlight the need to point toward the search for explanations of the bio-molecular basis of the therapeutic effects of medicinal plants.

Original languageEnglish
Article number920
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2023


  • 16S rDNA sequence
  • antibiotic activity
  • bioprospecting
  • endemic medicinal plants
  • ethnomedicine
  • rhizosphere bacteria


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