• Ammonium/methylamine uptake;
  • Kinetic experiment;
  • Mycorrhiza;
  • Paxillus involutus


Using [14C]methylamine as an analogue of ammonium, the kinetics and the energetics of NH4+ transport were studied in the ectomycorrhizal fungus, Paxillus involutus (Batsch) Fr. The apparent half-saturation constant (Km) and the maximum uptake rate (Vmax) for the carrier-mediated transport derived from the Eadie-Hofstee transformation were 180 μM and 380 nmol (mg dry wt)−1 min−1, respectively. Both pH dependence and inhibition by protonophores indicate that methylamine transport in P. involutus was dependent on the electrochemical H+ gradient. Both long-term and short-term uptake experiments were consistent with regulation of ammonium/methylamine transport processes by the presence of an organic nitrogen source. Analysis of methylamine uptake by different P. involutus isolates revealed no obvious trend in the uptake capacities in relation to N deposition at the collection site. Kinetic parameters were determined in P. involutus/Betula pendula (Roth.) axenic association and in detached mycorrhizal roots isolated from forest sites. Enhanced methylamine uptake in the presence of the fungal symbiont was demonstrated. Homogeneous Vmax values were found for axenic and detached mycorrhizas, whereas Km values showed greater variations.