Hoysted, GA; Jacob, AS; Kowal, J; Giesemann, P; Bidartondo, MI; Duckett, JG; Gebauer, G; Rimington, WR; Schornack, S; Pressel, S; Field, KJ: Mucoromycotina fine root endophyte fungi form nutritional mutualisms with vascular plants, Plant Physiology, 181, 565-577 (2019), doi:10.1104/pp.19.00729
Abstract:
Fungi and plants have engaged in intimate symbioses that are globally widespread and have driven terrestrial biogeochemical processes since plant terrestrialisation >500 Mya. Recently, hitherto unknown nutritional mutualisms involving ancient lineages of fungi and non-vascular plants have been discovered although their extent and functional significance in vascular plants remains uncertain. Here, we provide first evidence of abundant carbon-for-nitrogen exchange between an early-diverging vascular plant (Lycopodiaceae) and Mucoromycotina (Endogonales) fine root endophyte. Furthermore, we provide evidence that the same fungal symbionts colonize neighbouring non-vascular and flowering plants. These findings fundamentally change our understanding of the physiology, interrelationships and ecology of underground plant-fungal symbioses in modern terrestrial ecosystems by revealing the nutritional role of Mucoromycotina fungal symbionts in vascular plants.
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