, Volume 49, Issue 2, pp 207-215
Date: 26 Jan 2013

In vitro mycorrhization of the rubber tree Hevea brasiliensis Müll Arg

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In vitro cultivation systems of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi are useful tools to study the interaction between plants and their fungal symbiont, and also to develop new biotechnologies. Plantlets of the latex-producing species Hevea brasiliensis clone PB 260 were grown in a dense extraradical mycelium network of the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus Rhizophagus irregularis MUCL 41833 developed from a mycelium donor plant (Medicago truncatula A17). The factors indole-3-butyric acid (IBA), 2-morpholineoethanesulfonic acid monohydrate (MES) buffer, and carbon dioxide (CO2) were tested on root development and colonization by the fungus. No colonization was observed in the presence of plantlets pre-treated with IBA. The highest levels of root colonization were obtained when plantlets were mycorrhized under a high CO2 concentration (1,000 μmol mol−1) with MES (10 mM) added to the growth medium. Widespread root colonization (with presence of arbuscules, intraradical mycelium, and spores/vesicles) was predominantly observed in newly produced roots. Therefore, it appears essential to improve root initiation and growth for improving in vitro mycorrhization of H. brasiliensis. We demonstrated the potential of the “mycelium donor plant” in vitro culture system to produce colonized H. brasiliensis plantlets before their transfer to ex vitro conditions.