|BINDELL, MOLLY - Rutgers University|
|LUO, JING - Rutgers University|
|WALSH, EMILY - Rutgers University|
|WAGNER, NICOLE - Rutgers University|
|MILLER, STEPHEN - Animal And Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)|
|BONOS, STACY - Rutgers University|
|ZHANG, NING - Rutgers University|
Submitted to: Grass Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/8/2021
Publication Date: 3/5/2021
Citation: Bindell, M., Luo, J., Walsh, E., Wagner, N.E., Miller, S.J., Cai, G., Bonos, S.A., Zhang, N. 2021. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities associated with switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) in the acidic, oligotrophic pine barrens ecosystem. Grass Research 1:2. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.48130/GR-2021-0002.
Interpretive Summary: Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi live with their plant hosts and form mutually beneficial relationships. Over 80% of all land plants associate with AM fungi. This symbiosis plays an important role in ecosystem services and sustainable crop production. The current study examines land use and soil condition on the composition of AM fungi. AM fungi communities associated with switchgrass in the acidic and nutrition poor pine barren ecosystem were compared with those in regular agricultural production settings and in a native prairie. Two AM fungi genera, Acaulospora and Ambispora, were almost exclusively found in the pine barrens sites. Glomus was the most ubiquitous AM fungal genus recovered from all sites. Land use and soil PH both had significant impact on the composition of AM fungi community. Understanding the composition of AM fungi community and the factors contributing to it will eventually pave the way to apply AM fungi to enhance environmental health and crop production.
Technical Abstract: Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi contribute globally to ecosystem services and play an important role in sustainable crop production. However, it is unclear which factors contribute most to their colonization and community structure at different sites, particularly in understudied ecosystems. This study investigated the AM fungal communities associated with switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) in the understudied acidic and oligotrophic pine barrens ecosystem using next-generation sequencing. Switchgrass was also sampled from agroecosystems, as well as, from a native prairie for comparison. The pine barrens switchgrass harbored a distinct AM fungal community-- Acaulospora and Ambispora were almost exclusively found in the pine barrens sites, and some of these species may represent undescribed taxa. Glomus was the most ubiquitous AM fungal genus recovered from all sites. This study suggests differences in the AM fungal community structure under different soil properties and land uses. This is the first sequence-based report of the AM fungal communities in the pine barrens ecosystem.