Plant Diversity ›› 2022, Vol. 44 ›› Issue (02): 127-134.DOI: 10.1016/j.pld.2021.06.005

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Non-host plants: Are they mycorrhizal networks players?

Yanliang Wanga, Xinhua Hea,b,c, Fuqiang Yua   

  1. a The Germplasm Bank of Wild Species, Yunnan Key Laboratory for Fungal Diversity and Green Development, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, Yunnan, 650201, China;
    b Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, University of California at Davis, Davis, CA, 95616, USA;
    c School of Biological Sciences, University of Western Australia, Perth, WA, 6009, Australia
  • Received:2021-04-05 Revised:2021-06-01 Online:2022-04-25 Published:2022-04-24
  • Contact: Fuqiang Yu,
  • Supported by:
    This study was supported by grants from Yunnan High Level Talent Introduction Plan, Kunming Institute of Botany (Y9627111K1) and Natural Sciences Foundation of China (31901204).

Abstract: Common mycorrhizal networks (CMNs) that connect individual plants of the same or different species together play important roles in nutrient and signal transportation, and plant community organization. However, about 10% of land plants are non-mycorrhizal species with roots that do not form any well-recognized types of mycorrhizas; and each mycorrhizal fungus can only colonize a limited number of plant species, resulting in numerous non-host plants that could not establish typical mycorrhizal symbiosis with a specific mycorrhizal fungus. If and how non-mycorrhizal or non-host plants are able to involve in CMNs remains unclear. Here we summarize studies focusing on mycorrhizal-mediated host and non-host plant interaction. Evidence has showed that some host-supported both arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) and ectomycorrhizal (EM) hyphae can access to non-host plant roots without forming typical mycorrhizal structures, while such non-typical mycorrhizal colonization often inhibits the growth but enhances the induced system resistance of non-host plants. Meanwhile, the host growth is also differentially affected, depending on plant and fungi species. Molecular analyses suggested that the AMF colonization to non-hosts is different from pathogenic and endophytic fungi colonization, and the hyphae in non-host roots may be alive and have some unknown functions. Thus we propose that non-host plants are also important CMNs players. Using non-mycorrhizal model species Arabidopsis, tripartite culture system and new technologies such as nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry and multi-omics, to study nutrient and signal transportation between host and non-host plants via CMNs may provide new insights into the mechanisms underlying benefits of intercropping and agro-forestry systems, as well as plant community establishment and stability.

Key words: Colonization, Mycorrhizal networks, Non-hosts, Tripartite interaction