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Symbiosis

, Volume 73, Issue 1, pp 45–56 | Cite as

Potato field-inoculation in Ecuador with Rhizophagus irregularis: no impact on growth performance and associated arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities

  • Paul Loján
  • Carolina Senés-Guerrero
  • Juan Pablo Suárez
  • Peter Kromann
  • Arthur Schüßler
  • Stéphane Declerck
Article

Abstract

A field trial was conducted in two localities of the Ecuadorian Andes to evaluate potato (Solanum tuberosum c.v. INIAP - Fripapa) response to inoculation with four commercial products containing the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF) strain Rhizophagus irregularis DAOM 197198. In parallel, potato roots were analysed using 454 GS-FLX+ sequencing of c. 800 bp of the nuclear LSU rRNA gene to assess the associated AMF communities. To evaluate inoculation success, sequence reads of R. irregularis on the root samples were compared between inoculated and not inoculated plants by analysing the frequency of occurrence (FO) and relative read abundance (RA). None of the commercial products significantly increased potato yield. Instead, the AMF communities were dominated by an unknown Acaulospora sp. (Sp14) found at high FO and RA in both localities. Rhizophagus irregularis was found in most of the roots of both inoculated and not inoculated plants at both localities. However, its abundance was unexpectedly low indicating poor inoculum establishment. Clearly, many factors have to be taken in consideration for the successful application of AMF-based inoculants. For the Ecuadorian field trials, several causes may explain the lack or poor establishment of R. irregularis such as inoculation technique, agricultural practices, biotic and abiotic conditions and competition with native AMF species.

Keywords

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi Commercial inoculum LSU rRNA gene Rhizophagus irregularis Solanum tuberosum 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme FP7/2007-2013 under grant agreement N° 227522, entitled “Valorizing Andean microbial diversity through sustainable intensification of potato-based farming systems”. Paul Loján was funded by SENESCYT (Secretaría Nacional de Educación Ciencia y Tecnología del Ecuador).

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul Loján
    • 1
    • 2
  • Carolina Senés-Guerrero
    • 3
    • 4
  • Juan Pablo Suárez
    • 2
  • Peter Kromann
    • 5
  • Arthur Schüßler
    • 3
  • Stéphane Declerck
    • 1
  1. 1.Earth and Life Institute, Applied Microbiology, MycologyUniversité catholique de LouvainLouvain-la-NeuveBelgium
  2. 2.Departamento de Ciencias NaturalesUniversidad Técnica Particular de LojaLojaEcuador
  3. 3.Genetics, Department of BiologyLudwig-Maximilians University MunichPlanegg-MartinsriedGermany
  4. 4.Tecnologico de MonterreyMonterreyMexico
  5. 5.International Potato Center (CIP)QuitoEcuador

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