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Molecular diversity and distribution of indigenous arbuscular mycorrhizal communities colonizing roots of two different winter cover crops in response to their root proliferation

Abstract

A clear understanding of how crop root proliferation affects the distribution of the spore abundance of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and the composition of AMF communities in agricultural fields is imperative to identify the potential roles of AMF in winter cover crop rotational systems. Toward this goal, we conducted a field trial using wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) or red clover (Trifolium pratense L.) grown during the winter season. We conducted a molecular analysis to compare the diversity and distribution of AMF communities in roots and spore abundance in soil cropped with wheat and red clover. The AMF spore abundance, AMF root colonization, and abundance of root length were investigated at three different distances from winter crops (0 cm, 7.5 cm, and 15 cm), and differences in these variables were found between the two crops. The distribution of specific AMF communities and variables responded to the two winter cover crops. The majority of Glomerales phylotypes were common to the roots of both winter cover crops, but Gigaspora phylotypes in Gigasporales were found only in red clover roots. These results also demonstrated that the diversity of the AMF colonizing the roots did not significantly change with the three distances from the crop within each rotation but was strongly influenced by the host crop identity. The distribution of specific AMF phylotypes responded to the presence of wheat and red clover roots, indicating that the host crop identity was much more important than the proliferation of crop roots in determining the diversity of the AMF communities.

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Correspondence to Masao Higo.

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Higo, M., Isobe, K., Miyazawa, Y. et al. Molecular diversity and distribution of indigenous arbuscular mycorrhizal communities colonizing roots of two different winter cover crops in response to their root proliferation. J Microbiol. 54, 86–97 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12275-016-5379-2

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Keywords

  • arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi
  • community structure
  • cover crops
  • host identity
  • root distribution