Attachment of different soil bacteria to arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal extraradical hyphae is determined by hyphal vitality and fungal species


  • Editor: Nina Gunde-Cimerman

Correspondence: Jonas F. Toljander (previously published as Jonas F. Johansson), Department of Forest Mycology and Pathology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Box 7026, SE-750 07, Uppsala, Sweden. Tel: +46 18 67 27 20; fax: +46 18 67 35 99; e-mail:


Attachment of certain bacteria to living arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal extraradical hyphae may be an important prerequisite for interactions between these microorganisms, with implications for nutrient supply and plant health. The attachment of five different strains of gfp-tagged soil bacteria (Paenibacillus brasilensis PB177 (pnf8), Bacillus cereus VA1 (pnf8), Pseudomonas fluorescens SBW25∷gfp/lux, Arthrobacter chlorophenolicus A6G, and Paenibacillus peoriae BD62 (pnf8)) to vital and nonvital extraradical hyphae of the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi Glomus sp. MUCL 43205 and Glomus intraradices MUCL 43194 was examined. Arthrobacter chlorophenolicus did not attach to hyphae, whereas the other bacterial strains did to a varying degree. Only P. brasilensis showed greater attachment to vital hyphae than nonvital hyphae of both Glomus species tested. Pseudomonas fluorescens showed a higher attachment to vital compared with nonvital Glomus sp. MUCL 43205 hyphae, whereas this relationship was opposite for attachment to G. intraradices. Both B. cereus and P. peoriae showed higher attachment to nonvital hyphae. This study provides novel evidence that under laboratory conditions soil bacteria differ in their ability to colonize vital and nonvital hyphae and that this can also be influenced by the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal species involved. The significance of bacterial attachment to mycorrhizal fungal extraradical hyphae is discussed.