, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp 293-297

Effect of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi on verticillium wilt of cotton

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Abstract

The development of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (VAMF): Glomus mosseae (Nicol and Gerd.) Gerdemann and Trappe, Glomus versiforme (Karsten) Berch, Sclerocystis sinuosa Gerdemann and Bakhi and Verticillium dahliae and the effects of the VAMF on the verticillium wilt of cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L. and Gossypium barbadense L.) were studied with paper pots, black plastic tubes and clay pots under natural growth conditions. All of the tested VAMF were able to infect all the cotton varieties used in the present experiment and typical vesicles and arbuscules were formed in the cortical cells of the cotton roots after inoculation. The cap cells, meristem, differentiating and elongating zones of the root tip were found to be colonized by the VAMF. In the case of most V. dahliae infection, the colonization occurred mostly from the root tip up to 2 cm. VAMF and V. dahliae mutually reduced their percentage of infection when inoculated simultaneously. VAMF inoculation reduced the numbers of germinable microsclerotia in the soil of the mycorrhizosphere, while the quantity of VAM fungal spores in the soil was not influenced by infection of with V. dahliae. The % of arbuscule colonization in roots was negatively correlated with the disease grades, while the numbers of vesicles in roots were not. These results suggest that certain vital competition and antagonistic reactions exist between VAMF and V. dahliae. VAMF reduced the incidence and disease indices of verticillium wilt of cotton during the whole growth phase. It is evident that cotton seedling growth was promoted, flowering was advanced, the numbers of flowers and bolls were increased, and this resulted in an increase in the yield of seed cotton. Among the VAMF species, Glomus versiforme was the most effective, and Sclerocystis sinuosa was inferior. So far as the author is aware, such an effect of VAMF on the increase of cotton wilt tolerance/resistance is reported here far the first time.