2008 Student Research Conference:
21st Annual Student Research Conference

Characterization of Root-Associated Fungal Communities Inhabiting Bouteloua gracilis, Sporobolus cryptandrus, and Yucca glauca.
Hana H. Khidir*, Douglas M. Eudy, and Patrick A. Granneman
Dr. Jose Herrera, Faculty Mentor

Recent research has shown that some root-associated fungi (RAF) are necessary for the success of plants in harsh environments. Few studies have specifically examined how RAF communities vary between different species of plants coexisting in arid environments. We examined RAF communities inhabiting three common and co-occurring plants collected at six points along a 9km transect within the semi-arid grasslands of New Mexico: Bouteloua gracilis, Sporobolus cryptandrus, and Yucca glauca. The most common Operational Taxanomic Units (OTUs) from the two grasses were sequences related to Phoma sp. and Crinipellis sp. Conversely, OTUs from Y. glauca greatly differed from the grasses with the major RAF identified as Fusarium sp., Alternaria sp., and Sporothrix sp. A regression analysis on Morisita-Horn and Sorenson qualitative similarity values of all pair-wise comparisons of OTUs among all B. gracilis plants showed no significance. Similar comparisons among S. cryptandrus and Y. glauca plants also showed no significance.

Keywords: fungi, root-associated fungi, arid environments , plant-microbe interactions, ecological genomics

Topic(s):Biology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 2-1
Location: VH 1432
Time: 8:15

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