Root diversity

Milena Schneider1
1 Agroecology

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For my bachelor thesis at the department of agroecology, I scanned maize roots from a climate chamber experiment as part of the RhizoTraits project to study the maize plants root morphology.The experiment compares two maize genotypes, a wildtype which is able to establish a symbiosis with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and a mutant incapable to establish a symbiosis with AMF, under drought-stressed and well-watered conditions. In my bachelor thesis I want to investigate the effects of drought stress on the root morphology of the maize plants and the influence of a symbiosis with AMF on it. To obtain the root morphology data, I made scans of each root piece to evaluate the scans using the software RhizoVision to get information on root length, diameter, volume, surface area etc.Displaying all the root scans side by side impressively shows the diversity of the maize plants root morphology in its different sizes and structures and gives us an idea of the strategies for resource uptake under different environmental conditions.

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