, Volume 16, Issue 8, pp 543-552
Date: 17 Oct 2006

Diversity of AMF associated with Ammophila arenaria ssp. arundinacea in Portuguese sand dunes

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Abstract

Dune vegetation is essential for the formation and preservation of sand dunes and the protection of the coast line. Coastal sand dunes are harsh environments where arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) play an important role in promoting plant establishment and growth. We present a study of the diversity of AMF associated with A. arenaria ssp. arundinacea in two locations of the Portuguese coast under a Mediterranean climate. These two locations were selected to compare a well-preserved dune system from a protected area with a degraded dune system from a public beach. AMF diversity was assessed mainly by cloning and sequencing of a fragment of the ribosomal SSU using the primer NS31 and AM1. Most of the 89 AMF clones obtained from the rhizosphere and roots of A. arenaria belonged to the genus Glomus, the largest clade within the Glomeromycota. Higher AMF diversity was found in the least disturbed site, in which spores of Scutellospora persica, Glomus constrictum and Glomus globiferum were found in the rhizosphere of A. arenaria.