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Hang Lu

Most land plants form symbiotic associations with arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi, which plays a major role in the sustainability of terrestrial environments. However, the essential building blocks of AM symbiosis remain unclear. The model plant Arabidopsis thaliana is an AM non-host because several genes were lost during the evolution of Brassicaceae. Therefore, A. thaliana and its associated fungi Colletotrichum tofieldiae (Ct) are an ideal system to study the role of traits of the AM symbiosis in mycorrhizal function and host productivity and health.

In this project, we hypothesized that the bidirectional nutrient exchanges might be a primary force in stabilizing the plant-AM fungi symbiosis. We reconstruct the reciprocal exchange of carbon and phosphorus, naturally operating in AM host species, in Ct-Arabidopsis system and  detemine whether it would improve the efficiency of symbiotic interactions, enhance host plant performance and fitness during environmental stress.

Arabidopsis thaliana inoculated by Colletotrichum tofieldiae


University of Cologne
Institute of Plant Sciences
Zülpicher Str. 47b
D-50674 Cologne

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