Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungus Improves Rhizobium–Glycyrrhiza Seedling Symbiosis under Drought Stress.
Author(s) Hao, Zhipeng; Xie, Wei; Jiang, Xuelian; Wu, Zhaoxiang; Zhang, Xin; Chen, Baodong
Publication year 2019
Publication name Agronomy
Material typeAcademic journal

Rhizobia and arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi can potentially alleviate the abiotic stress on the legume Glycyrrhiza (licorice), while the potential benefits these symbiotic microbes offer to their host plant are strongly influenced by environmental factors. A greenhouse pot experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of single and combined inoculation with a rhizobium Mesorhizobium tianshanense Chen and an AM fungus Rhizophagus irregularis Walker & Schuessler on Glycyrrhiza uralensis Fisch. seedling performance under different water regimes. Drought stress inhibited rhizobium nodulation but increased mycorrhizal colonization. Furthermore, co-inoculation of rhizobium and AM fungus favored nodulation under both well-watered and drought stress conditions. Glycyrrhiza seedling growth showed a high mycorrhizal dependency. The seedlings showed a negative growth dependency to rhizobium under well-watered conditions but showed a positive response under drought stress. R. irregularis-inoculated plants showed a much higher stress tolerance index (STI) value than M. tianshanense-inoculated plants. STI value was more pronounced when plants were co-inoculated with R. irregularis and M. tianshanense compared with single-inoculated plants. Plant nitrogen concentration and contents were significantly influenced by inoculation treatments and water regimes. R. irregularis inoculation significantly increased plant shoot and root phosphorus contents. AM fungus inoculation could improve Glycyrrhiza plant–rhizobium symbiosis under drought stress, thereby suggesting that tripartite symbiotic relationships were more effective for promoting plant growth and enhancing drought tolerance.

Keyword(s)VESICULAR-arbuscular mycorrhizas, NITROGEN content of plants, DROUGHT management, PLANT nutrition, SEEDLINGS, LEGUMES, DROUGHTS, SYMBIOSIS
Author affiliation(s)
1State Key Laboratory of Urban and Regional Ecology, Research Center for EcoEnvironmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100085, China, 2University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China, 3Jiangxi Engineering and Technology Research Center for Ecological Remediation of Heavy metal pollution, Institute of Biology and Resources, Jiangxi Academy of Sciences, Nanchang 330096, China

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