Table of Content

Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants

Submission Deadline: 28 February 2022 (closed)

Guest Editors

Prof. Qiang-Sheng Wu, Yangtze University, China;

Assoc. Prof. Ying-Ning Zou, Yangtze University, China;

Assist. Prof. Bhoopander Giri, University of Delhi, India;

Prof. Xiancan Zhu, Anhui Normal University, China;

Dr. Yanbo Hu, Northeast Forestry University, China;

Prof. Nong Zhou, Chongqing Three Gorges University, China;


During plant growth, plants often experience various biotic and abiotic stresses that strongly limit plant growth, disrupt the normal physiological and biochemical metabolism in cells of host plants, which in turn lead to massive burst of reactive oxygen species, plasma membrane disruption, and RNA degradation. Thus, biotic and abiotic stresses have been made an important limiting factor in plant growth.

At the same time, there are many beneficial microorganisms in the plant rhizosphere, including arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi. This AM fungus can establish a reciprocal symbiosis with roots of about 72% of terrestrial plants, viz., arbuscular mycorrhizas. Mycorrhizal fungi help the host plant to absorb water and mineral nutrients from the soil and in turn receive carbohydrates and/or fatty acids from the host plant for its growth.

Results from numerous field and potted experiments have shown that AM fungi possess multiple pathways to respond to and enhance host resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses. For example, AM fungi themselves absorb water directly from the soil and transfer it rapidly to cortical cells containing arbuscules through mycelial channels without septa and then unload it in the host. In addition, in host plants, many cellular metabolites such as fatty acids, polyamines, and sugars are directed toward resistance to host resistance. Moreover, some stress-responsive genes such as aquaporin proteins of both AM fungi and host plants work synergistically to promote water uptake or loss in the host. The various intracellular responses may form a complex regulatory network. More studies are needed to develop the regulatory network.

This special issue works on the above mentioned topic, along with the latest advances. The manuscripts are welcome to focus on the following topics, but are not limited to them:

1) Strategies of mycorrhizal fungi themselves in response to stress.

2) Cellular responces of mycorrhizal plants to stress.

3) AM fungi respond to plant stress resistance in physiological levels.

4) Molecular mechanisms regarding AM fungal roles in plant stress resistance, especially based on omics analysis.

5) Combination of AM fungi and other microorganisms mitigates stress resistance of host plants.

6) Expectation of the effect of inoculation of AM fungi in the field on plant resistance or growth.


Drought, Mycorrhiza, Plant Disease, Salinity, Stress-Responsive Gene

Published Papers

  • Open Access


    Advances in the studies on symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi of traditional Chinese medicinal plants

    BIOCELL, Vol.46, No.12, pp. 2559-2573, 2022, DOI:10.32604/biocell.2022.022825
    (This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi reside in the rhizosphere and form mutualistic associations with plant roots. They promote photosynthesis, improve stress resistance, and induce secondary metabolite biosynthesis in host medicinal plants. The AM fungi that are symbiotic with medicinal plants comprise a wide array of species and have abundant germplasm resources. Though research on the AM fungi in medicinal plants began relatively recently, it has nonetheless become an investigative hot spot. Several scholars have explored the diversity and the growth-promoting effects of mycorrhizal fungi in hundreds of medicinal plants. Current research on symbiotic AM fungi in medicinal plants has focused mainly… More >

  • Open Access


    Effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria on growth and reactive oxygen metabolism of tomato fruits under low saline conditions

    BIOCELL, Vol.46, No.12, pp. 2575-2582, 2022, DOI:10.32604/biocell.2022.021910
    (This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)
    Abstract Land salinization is a major form of land degradation, which is not conducive to the growth and quality of fruits and vegetables. Plant salt tolerance can be enhanced by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) or plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). This study examined the effects of inoculation with PGPR singly or in combination with AMF, on the growth and quality of tomato fruits under low saline conditions. Tomatoes were cultivated in a greenhouse with sterilized soil, inoculated with PGPR, AMF, or co-inoculated with PGPR and AMF, and NaCl solution (1%) was added to the soil. The results indicated that AMF + PGPR… More >

  • Open Access


    Significant changes in arbuscular mycorrhizal community and soil physicochemical properties during the saline-alkali grassland vegetation succession

    BIOCELL, Vol.46, No.11, pp. 2475-2488, 2022, DOI:10.32604/biocell.2022.021477
    (This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)
    Abstract Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are widely distributed in various habitats, and the community composition varies in response to the changing environmental conditions. To explore the response of community composition to the succession of saline-alkali land, soil samples were collected from three succession stages of Songnen saline-alkali grassland. Subsequently, the soil characteristics were determined and the AM fungi in soil samples were analyzed by high-throughput sequencing. Then, the response relationship between community composition and soil characteristics was studied by Canonical correlation and Pearson analyses. The soil properties improved with the succession of saline-alkali grassland. There was no significant difference in alpha… More >

  • Open Access


    Isolation and species diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in the rhizosphere of Puccinellia tenuiflora of Songnen saline-alkaline grassland, China

    BIOCELL, Vol.46, No.11, pp. 2465-2474, 2022, DOI:10.32604/biocell.2022.021016
    (This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)
    Abstract Salinization has led to the deterioration of the ecological environment, affected the growth of plants, and hindered the development of agriculture and forestry. Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi, as important soil microorganisms, play significant physiological and ecological roles in promoting plant nutrient absorption and improving soil structure. Puccinellia tenuiflora (Turcz.) Scribn. et Merr. in Songnen saline-alkaline grassland was selected as the research object to observe AM fungal colonization of the roots and explore the species and diversity of AM fungi in symbiotic association with P. tenuiflora. This study showed that AM fungi colonized in P. tenuiflora roots and formed a typical… More >

  • Open Access


    Mycorrhiza improves cold tolerance of Satsuma orange by inducing antioxidant enzyme gene expression

    BIOCELL, Vol.46, No.8, pp. 1959-1966, 2022, DOI:10.32604/biocell.2022.020391
    (This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)
    Abstract A potted experiment was carried out to study the effect of an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (Diversispora versiformis) and arbuscular mycorrhizal like fungus (Piriformospora indica) on antioxidant enzyme defense system of Satsuma orange (Citrus sinensis cv. Oita 4) grafted on Poncirus trifoliata under favourable temperature (25°C) and cold temperature (0°C) for 12 h. Such short-term treatment of cold temperature did not cause any significant change in root fungal colonization and spore density in soil. Under cold stress, D. versiformis inoculation did not change the activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), and peroxidase (POD) in leaves and roots, whereas P. indica… More >

  • Open Access


    Claroideoglomus etunicatum improved the growth and saline– alkaline tolerance of Potentilla anserina by altering physiological and biochemical properties

    BIOCELL, Vol.46, No.8, pp. 1967-1978, 2022, DOI:10.32604/biocell.2022.019304
    (This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)
    Abstract To investigate the effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi on the growth and saline–alkaline tolerance of Potentilla anserina L., the seedlings were inoculated with Claroideoglomus etunicatum (W.N. Becker & Gerd.) C. Walker & A. Schüßler in pot cultivation. After 90 days of culture, saline–alkaline stress was induced with NaCl and NaHCO3 solution according to the main salt components in saline–alkaline soils. Based on the physiological response of P. anserina to the stress in the preliminary experiment, the solution concentrations of 0 mmol/L, 75 mmol/L, 150 mmol/L, 225 mmol/L and 300 mmol/L were treated with stress for 10 days, respectively. The… More >

  • Open Access


    Mycorrhiza improves plant growth and photosynthetic characteristics of tea plants in response to drought stress

    BIOCELL, Vol.46, No.5, pp. 1339-1346, 2022, DOI:10.32604/biocell.2022.018909
    (This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)
    Abstract Tea plants are sensitive to soil moisture deficit, with the level of soil water being a critical factor affecting their growth and quality. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) can improve water and nutrient absorption, but it is not clear whether AMF can improve the photosynthetic characteristics of tea plants. A potted study was conducted to determine the effects of Claroideoglomus etunicatum on plant growth, leaf water status, pigment content, gas exchange, and chlorophyll fluorescence parameters in Camellia sinensis cv. Fuding Dabaicha under well-watered (WW) and drought stress (DS) conditions. Root mycorrhizal colonization and soil hyphal length were significantly reduced by the… More >

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