Endophytic insect-parasitic fungi translocate nitrogen directly from insects to plants.
Summary of "Endophytic insect-parasitic fungi translocate nitrogen directly from insects to plants."
Most plants obtain nitrogen through nitrogen-fixing bacteria and microbial decomposition of plant and animal material. Many vascular plants are able to form close symbiotic associations with endophytic fungi. Metarhizium is a common plant endophyte found in a large number of ecosystems. This abundant soil fungus is also a pathogen to a large number of insects, which are a source of nitrogen. It is possible that the endophytic capability and insect pathogenicity of Metarhizium are coupled to provide an active method of nitrogen transfer to plant hosts via fungal mycelia. We used soil microcosms to test the ability of M. robertsii to translocate insect-derived nitrogen to plants. Insects were injected with (15)N-labeled nitrogen, and we tracked the incorporation of (15)N into amino acids in two plant species, haricot bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), in the presence of M. robertsii. These findings are evidence that active nitrogen acquisition by plants in this tripartite interaction may play a larger role in soil nitrogen cycling than previously thought.
Department of Biological Sciences, Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Science (New York, N.Y.)
- PubMed Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22723421
- DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1222289
Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions
The process in certain BACTERIA; FUNGI; and CYANOBACTERIA converting free atmospheric NITROGEN to biologically usable forms of nitrogen, such as AMMONIA; NITRATES; and amino compounds.
An order of fungi comprising mostly insect pathogens, though some infect mammals including humans. Strict host specificity make these fungi a focus of many biological control studies.
Bacterial Secretion Systems
Processes that translocate macromolecules across the cell envelope of gram negative bacteria, often directly into the host. These effectors modulate the defense response and thereby facilitate survival of the pathogen.
An order of fungi in the phylum ASCOMYCOTA that includes a number of species which are parasitic on higher plants, insects, or fungi. Other species are saprotrophic.
Free-standing or supported light weight meshwork fabric made of cotton, silk, polyester or other material having openings too small to allow entry of mosquitoes or other insects, thereby protecting against INSECT BITES; INSECT STINGS, and insect-borne diseases.
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