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Genetic and genomic glimpses of the elusive arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi.

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JournalCURRENT OPINION IN PLANT BIOLOGY
DatePublished - Aug 2012
Issue number4
Volume15
Number of pages8
Pages (from-to)454-461
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), which form an ancient and widespread mutualistic symbiosis with plants, are a crucial but still enigmatic component of the plant microbiome. Nowadays, their obligate biotrophy is no longer an obstacle to deciphering the role played by AMF in this fascinating symbiosis. The first genome-wide transcriptomic analysis of an AMF showed a metabolic complexity with no sign of massive gene loss, and the presence of genes for meiotic recombination suggests that AMF are not simple clonal organisms, as originally thought. New findings on suppression of host defenses and nutrient exchange processes have shed light on the mechanisms that contribute to such an intimate and long-lasting integration between living plant and fungal cells.

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