Title

Fungal Endophyte Diversity in Herbaceous Desert Plants

Abstract

Plants and fungi are known to form many types of symbiotic interactions. Emerging evidence suggests that the most common plant-fungal interactions likely involve fungal endophytes. These fungi live within plant tissues without causing any apparent symptoms. Data have shown that fungal endophytes are extremely common and diverse in the tropical forests. However, little is known regarding their prevalence and diversity in deserts. I investigated the diversity and community structures of fungal endophytes in leaf, stem, and root tissues of three herbaceous plant species found in Tucson, Arizona: Solanum elaeagnifolium (Solanaceae), Nicotiana obtusifolia (Solanaceae), and Verbesina encelioides(Asteraceae).

Faculty Sponsor

Tim Parker and Kate Jackson

Sponsor Department/Programs

Biology

Tracks

Plant Life

Location

Science 159

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

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Fungal Endophyte Diversity in Herbaceous Desert Plants

Science 159

Plants and fungi are known to form many types of symbiotic interactions. Emerging evidence suggests that the most common plant-fungal interactions likely involve fungal endophytes. These fungi live within plant tissues without causing any apparent symptoms. Data have shown that fungal endophytes are extremely common and diverse in the tropical forests. However, little is known regarding their prevalence and diversity in deserts. I investigated the diversity and community structures of fungal endophytes in leaf, stem, and root tissues of three herbaceous plant species found in Tucson, Arizona: Solanum elaeagnifolium (Solanaceae), Nicotiana obtusifolia (Solanaceae), and Verbesina encelioides(Asteraceae).