, Volume 14, Issue 2, pp 111–117 | Cite as

Diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi colonising roots of the grass species Agrostis capillaris and Lolium perenne in a field experiment

  • Armelle Gollotte
  • Diederik van Tuinen
  • David Atkinson
Original Paper


Analysis of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungal diversity through morphological characters of spores and intraradicular hyphae has suggested previously that preferential associations occur between plants and AM fungi. A field experiment was established to investigate whether AM fungal diversity is affected by different host plants in upland grasslands. Indigenous vegetation from plots in an unimproved pasture was replaced with monocultures of either Agrostis capillaris or Lolium perenne. Modification of the diversity of AM fungi in these plots was evaluated by analysis of partial sequences in the large subunit (LSU) ribosomal RNA (rDNA) genes. General primers for AM fungi were designed for the PCR amplification of partial sequences using DNA extracted from root tissues of A. capillaris and L. perenne. PCR products were used to construct LSU rDNA libraries. Sequencing of randomly selected clones indicated that plant roots were colonised by AM fungi belonging to the genera Glomus, Acaulospora and Scutellospora. There was a difference in the diversity of AM fungi colonising roots of A. capillaris and L. perenne that was confirmed by PCR using primers specific for each sequence group. These molecular data suggest the existence of a selection pressure of plants on AM fungal communities.


Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi LSU rDNA Diversity Grasslands Ecological specificity 



This work was financially supported by the Scottish Executive Environment and Rural Affairs Department (Micronet initiative).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Armelle Gollotte
    • 1
    • 3
  • Diederik van Tuinen
    • 2
  • David Atkinson
    • 1
  1. 1.Scottish Agricultural CollegeCrop Science DepartmentEdinburgh EH9 3JGUK
  2. 2.Unité Mixte de Recherche 1088 INRA/Université de Bourgogne et FRE/CNRS 2625 Plante-Microbe-EnvironnementINRA-CMSEDijon cedexFrance
  3. 3.Unité Mixte de Recherche 1088 INRA/Université de Bourgogne et FRE/CNRS 2625 Plante-Microbe-EnvironnementINRA-CMSEDijon cedexFrance

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