Do Mycorrhiza Play a Role in the BNI Performance of Brachiaria humidicola?
Julian Ruggaber1, Konrad Egenolf1, Philipp Schad1, Nikola Teutscherová2, Eduardo Vazquez2, Ashly Arevalo3, Jacobo Arango3, Frank Rasche1
1University of Hohenheim, Inst. of Agric. Sci. in the Tropics (Hans-Ruthenberg-Institute), Germany
The tropical forage Brachiaria humidicola (Bh), a plant with recognised biological nitrification inhibition (BNI) potential, has been acknowledged as a model crop to investigate the BNI phenomenon. BNI is originally thought to be an allelochemical phenomenon, that inhibits the activity of soil nitrifying bacteria and archaea. Our studies on BNI have revealed, however, that also inter-microbial competition for nitrogen might play an important role in BNI. Recent research suggested that besides heterotrophic bacteria and archaea also symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) in the direct vicinity of the plant roots may contribute to the immobilisation of ammonium (NH4+) leading to low nitrification rates in Bh pastures. It must be emphasised that until now no in-depth research on the role of AMF in BNI has been published.
Keywords: Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, biological nitrification inhibition, Brachiaria grasses, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis, mycorrhizal symbiosis, qPCR
Contact Address: Julian Ruggaber, University of Hohenheim, Inst. of Agric. Sci. in the Tropics (Hans-Ruthenberg-Institute), Garbenstr. 13, 70599 Stuttgart, Germany, e-mail: julian.ruggaberuni-hohenheim.de