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


1 College of Life Sciences, Guangxi Normal University, Guilin, 541006, China
2 Guangxi Institute of Botany, Guangxi Zhuangzu Autonomous Region and Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guilin, 541006, China

* Corresponding Author: ZHONGFENG ZHANG. Email:

(This article belongs to this Special Issue: Mycorrhizal Fungal Roles in Stress Tolerance of Plants)

BIOCELL 2022, 46(12), 2559-2573.


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 on the effects of inoculating host plants with symbiotic mycorrhizal fungi. However, research on the symbiotic AM fungi in medicinal plants continues to expand, and further study is required to determine the mechanisms by which AM fungi interact with host plants. This paper introduces the diversity of symbiotic AM fungi of medicinal plants and the effects of AM fungi on rhizosphere soil of medicinal plants, including soil structure, microbiota, enzyme activities, etc. This review focuses on the effects of AM fungi on medicinal plants, including antioxidant enzyme systems, drought resistance, nutrient absorption profiles of macro- and micronutrients, accumulation of secondary metabolites such as terpenes, phenolic compounds, and nitrogenous compounds, and prevention of diseases. This review is expected to provide a reference for the application of AM fungi in medicinal plant cultivation, biological control, resource conservation, and the sustainable development of the traditional Chinese medicine industry.


Cite This Article

YU, L., ZHANG, Z., ZHOU, L. (2022). Advances in the studies on symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi of traditional Chinese medicinal plants. BIOCELL, 46(12), 2559–2573.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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