Tracing Rhizophagus irregularis isolate IR27 in Ziziphus mauritiana roots under field conditions
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) play a major role as biofertilizer for sustainable agriculture. Nevertheless, it is still poorly documented whether inoculated AMF can successfully establish in field soils as exotic AMF and improve plant growth and productivity. Further, the fate of an exogenous inoculum is still poorly understood. Here, we pre-inoculated two cultivars (Tasset and Gola) of the fruit tree Ziziphus mauritiana (jujube) with the exotic AM fungus Rhizophagus irregularis isolate IR27 before transplantation in the field. In two experiments, tracking and quantification of R. irregularis IR27 were assessed in a 13-month-old jujube and an 18-month-old jujube in two fields located in Senegal. Our results showed that the inoculant R. irregularis IR27 was quantitatively traced and discriminated from native R. irregularis isolates in roots by using a qPCR assay targeting a fragment of the RNA polymerase II gene (RPB1), and that the inoculum represented only fractions ranging from 11 to 15% of the Rhizophagus genus in the two plantations 13 and 18 months after transplantation, respectively. This study validates the use of the RPB1 gene as marker for a relative quantification of a mycorrhizal inoculant fungus isolate in the field.
KeywordsZiziphus mauritiana Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi Plantation RPB1 gene qPCR Field
This work was funded by the Africa-Brazil-France tripartite research program entitled “Fight against desertification in Africa” (2014–2016). Babacar Thioye received grants from the Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD), the Institut Sénégalais de Recherches Agricoles (ISRA), and from the French Embassy in Senegal (SCAC).
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