Journal of Chemical Ecology

, Volume 39, Issue 7, pp 1036–1044 | Cite as

Priming of Anti-Herbivore Defense in Tomato by Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungus and Involvement of the Jasmonate Pathway

  • Yuan Yuan Song
  • Mao Ye
  • Chuan You Li
  • Rui Long Wang
  • Xiao Chen Wei
  • Shi Ming Luo
  • Ren Sen Zeng


Mycorrhizas play a vital role in soil fertility, plant nutrition, and resistance to environmental stresses. However, mycorrhizal effects on plant resistance to herbivorous insects and the related mechanisms are poorly understood. This study evaluated effects of root colonization of tomato (Solanum lycopersicum Mill.) by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) Glomus mosseae on plant defense responses against a chewing caterpillar Helicoverpa arimigera. Mycorrhizal inoculation negatively affected larval performance. Real time RT-PCR analyses showed that mycorrhizal inoculation itself did not induce transcripts of most genes tested. However, insect feeding on AMF pre-inoculated plants resulted in much stronger defense response induction of four defense-related genes LOXD, AOC, PI-I, and PI-II in the leaves of tomato plants relative to non-inoculated plants. Four tomato genotypes: a wild-type (WT) plant, a jasmonic acid (JA) biosynthesis mutant (spr2), a JA-signaling perception mutant (jai1), and a JA-overexpressing 35S::PS plant were used to determine the role of the JA pathway in AMF-primed defense. Insect feeding on mycorrhizal 35S::PS plants led to higher induction of defense-related genes relative to WT plants. However, insect feeding on mycorrhizal spr2 and jai1 mutant plants did not induce transcripts of these genes. Bioassays showed that mycorrhizal inoculation on spr2 and jai1 mutants did not change plant resistance against H. arimigera. These results indicates that mycorrhizal colonization could prime systemic defense responses in tomato upon herbivore attack, and that the JA pathway is involved in defense priming by AMF.


Defense priming Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus Induced defense Jasmonate pathway Tomato Glomus mosseae Helicoverpa arimigera 



This research was supported by the National 973 Program of China (2011CB100400), National Natural Science Foundation of China (31070388, 31028018, 31100286), Guangdong Province Universities and Colleges Pearl River Scholar Funded Scheme (2010), Guangdong Natural Science Foundation of China (S2011040004336), China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (201104341, 20100480762), and Ph.D. Foundation of the Ministry of Education of China (20104404110004).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuan Yuan Song
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Mao Ye
    • 1
    • 2
  • Chuan You Li
    • 3
  • Rui Long Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiao Chen Wei
    • 1
    • 2
  • Shi Ming Luo
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ren Sen Zeng
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Conservation and Utilization of Subtropical Agro-bioresourcesSouth China Agricultural UniversityGuangzhouChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Tropical Agro-environment of Ministry of Agriculture of ChinaSouth China Agricultural UniversityGuangzhouChina
  3. 3.Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology of the Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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