Ancient lineages of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi provide little plant benefit
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Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF)EvolutionFunctional diversityPhylogenyPlant benefit
Säle, V... [et al.]. Ancient lineages of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi provide little plant benefit. Mycorrhiza (2021). [https://doi.org/10.1007/s00572-021-01042-5]
SponsorshipAgroscope; Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) 130764
Almost all land plants form symbiotic associations with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). Individual plants usually are colonized by a wide range of phylogenetically diverse AMF species. The impact that different AMF taxa have on plant growth is only partly understood. We screened 44 AMF isolates for their effect on growth promotion and nutrient uptake of leek plants (Allium porrum), including isolates that have not been tested previously. In particular, we aimed to test weather AMF lineages with an ancient evolutionary age differ from relatively recent lineages in their effects on leek plants. The AMF isolates that were tested covered 18 species from all five AMF orders, eight families, and 13 genera. The experiment was conducted in a greenhouse. A soil–sand mixture was used as substrate for the leek plants. Plant growth response to inoculation with AMF varied from − 19 to 232% and depended on isolate, species, and family identity. Species from the ancient families Archaeosporaceae and Paraglomeraceae tended to be less beneficial, in terms of stimulation plant growth and nutrient uptake, than species of Glomeraceae, Entrophosporaceae, and Diversisporaceae, which are considered phylogenetically more recent than those ancient families. Root colonization levels also depended on AMF family. This study indicates that plant benefit in the symbiosis between plants and AMF is linked to fungal identity and phylogeny and it shows that there are large differences in effectiveness of different AMF.