130 research outputs found

    Does a Common Pathway Transduce Symbiotic Signals in Plant-Microbe Interactions?

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    Recent years have witnessed major advances in our knowledge of plant mutualistic symbioses such as the rhizobium-legume symbiosis (RLS) and arbuscular mycorrhizas (AM). Some of these findings caused the revision of longstanding hypotheses, but one of the most solid theories is that a conserved set of plant proteins rules the transduction of symbiotic signals from beneficial glomeromycetes and rhizobia in a so-called common symbiotic pathway (CSP). Nevertheless, the picture still misses several elements, and a few crucial points remain unclear. How does one common pathway discriminate between - at least - two symbionts? Can we exclude that microbes other than AM fungi and rhizobia also use this pathway to communicate with their host plants? We here discuss the possibility that our current view is biased by a long-lasting focus on legumes, whose ability to develop both AM and RLS is an exception among plants and a recent innovation in their evolution; investigations in non-legumes are starting to place legume symbiotic signaling in a broader perspective. Furthermore, recent studies suggest that CSP proteins act in a wider scenario of symbiotic and non-symbiotic signaling. Overall, evidence is accumulating in favor of distinct activities for CSP proteins in AM and RLS, depending on the molecular and cellular context where they act

    Building a mycorrhizal cell: How to reach compatibility between plants and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi

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    Abstract Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi occur throughout the majority of ecosystems supporting host plant nutrition. Recent findings describe the accommodation of the fungus by the root cell as a crucial step for compatibility between the partners. We discuss here the novel aspects of cellular plant-fungus interactions, with a particular attention to the interface compartment, the unique apoplastic space hosting intracellular fungal structures. The main features of arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization are examined and recent information in the field of plant and fungal cell responses during the establishment of the symbiosis is discussed. Differences between the colonization of root epidermal and cortical tissues are discussed, highlighting the growing interest in the role of epidermal cells during the first and decisive steps of the symbiosis. New approaches such as root organ cultures, in vivo observations, GFP tagging and mutant plant analysis are commented on and information from these is compared with t..
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