The technique of in vitro cultivation of root organs has been developed over the past few decades and opens up new ways of studying plant-fungi associations. It is a technical breakthrough, especially for the investigation of the ubiquitous arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, since these obligate symbionts rely on plant tissue.
This is the first book describing this unique in vitro cultivation, which has markedly improved our general understanding of symbiosis. Presented by an international group of authors, including pioneers of this technique, it should encourage researchers to apply the method in further new studies on mycorrhizal fungi and plant-fungi interactions.
Various biological aspects such as the physiology, biochemistry, biodiversity, and life cycles of fungi as well as the effects of symbiosis on plant growth and development are described, including large-scale fungus production for biotechnological use. Detailed protocols allow the immediate application of the method to culture mycorrhizal fungi in vitro.
From the reviews: "There is no doubt that this book will interest not only mycorrhizologists, but also more generally, researchers working with obligate plant biotropic microorganisms recalcitrant to axenic culture in the absence of host roots. This volume of the Soil Biology series compiles experts' advice and know-how in the use of in vitro cultivation methods in AM symbiosis research. ! this book will be useful to researchers envisaging in vitro system for conservation, production, and studies of mycorrhizal fungi." (Ghislaine Recorbet, Mycorrhiza, 2006) "Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) form an extremely important group of soil fungi. ! This book, edited by three well-known experts in the field, gives an overview of the technology and reviews results obtained so far. ! This is the book that I would have seen written. ! strikes a good balance between optimism about the successes in store for the novel methodology and a critical attitude towards the methodology. The book will certainly be a very welcome addition to libraries ! ." (Thomas W. Kuyper, Mycopathologia, Vol. 162, 2006) "The Editors clearly explain how the obligate nature of AM fungi makes it difficult to study most aspects of their biology, and how the use of root-organ-cultures (ROCs) has opened new opportunities and vistas on several aspects of the AM symbiosis. ! The book is very interesting and worth considering as a reference manual ! ." (Paola Bonfante, Mycological Research, Vol. 110, 2006)
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