SCAR markers to detect mycorrhizas of an American Laccaria bicolor strain inoculated in European Douglas-fir plantations
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The American strain S238N of the ectomycorrhizal fungus Laccaria bicolor (Maire) Orton has been used to inoculate Douglas-fir [Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mir.) Franco] plantations in France over the last two decades. Laccaria fruit bodies are scarce in mature plantations, which precludes further assessment of its persistence by fruit body surveys. Our objective was to develop new markers to identify this strain and its eventual non-fruiting progeny on root tips. We converted nine random amplified polymorphic DNA markers into sequence characterized amplified region (SCAR) markers. Two of these SCAR markers enabled us to detect S238N on roots of seedlings and mature trees. No amplification of non-fungal (host plant, bacterial, etc.) DNA was observed. Moreover, both SCARs were amplified from Laccaria-like mycorrhizas in a Douglas-fir plantation inoculated 14 years ago, demonstrating the long-term persistence of the inoculant strain. We also obtained a SCAR marker to detect one strain of European origin (L. bicolor 81306), indicating that SCARs are potential markers to type the naturally occurring genets. Thus, SCAR markers are of great value in studying the persistence of inoculant strains and the effects on local populations of introducing foreign strains.
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