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Scientia Agricola

On-line version ISSN 1678-992X


LAMBAIS, Marcio Rodrigues. Unraveling the signaling and signal transduction mechanisms controlling arbuscular mycorrhiza development. Sci. agric. (Piracicaba, Braz.) [online]. 2006, vol.63, n.4, pp.405-413. ISSN 1678-992X.

Arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM) are the most widespread symbiotic associations between plant roots and soil fungi. AM can contribute to increasing the survival and fitness of plants to limiting environments mostly due to their ability in improving nutrient uptake from the soil solution. Despite their ecological significance, the mechanisms controlling AM development and functioning are largely unknown. The obligate mutualistic nature of the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) has hampered the advances on the understanding and application of the symbiosis. Significant alterations in the genetic programs of both symbionts are required for the successful establishment of an AM, and complex signaling and signal transduction mechanisms are likely involved. The analyses of legume mutants affected in the development of nitrogen fixing nodules and AM suggest that part of the signal transduction pathways involved in the regulation of both symbioses are conserved. Even though the use of genomics of model plants has helped to advance our understanding of the regulatory mechanisms in AM, identifying the signal molecules involved in plant-AMF communication and determining their transduction pathways is still essential for its biotechnological application in agriculture.

Keywords : DMI gene; symbiosis; branching factor; receptor; calcium spiking.

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