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Mycorrhiza. 2007 Jul;17(5):375-93. Epub 2007 May 3.

Structural differences in arbuscular mycorrhizal symbioses: more than 100 years after Gallaud, where next?

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  • 1Soil and Land Systems (Waite Campus), School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia, 5005, Australia.


This review commemorates and examines the significance of the work of Isobel Gallaud more than 100 years ago that first established the existence of distinct structural classes (Arum-type and Paris-type) within arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbioses. We add new information from recent publications to the previous data last collated 10 years ago to consider whether any patterns have emerged on the basis of different fungal morphology within plant species or families. We discuss: (1) possible control exerted by the fungus over AM morphology; (2) apparent lack of plant phylogenetic relationships between the classes; (3) functions of the interfaces in different structural classes in relation to nutrient transfer in particular; and (4) the occurrence of plants with both of the major classes, and with intermediate AM structures, in different plant habitats. We also give suggestions for future research to help remove uncertainties about the functional and ecological significance of differences in AM morphology. Lastly, we urge retention of the terms Arum- and Paris-type, which are now well recognised by those who study AM symbioses.

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