2008 Student Research Conference:
21st Annual Student Research Conference

Visual Assessment of Dark Septate Endophytic Fungi in the Roots of Sporobolus cryptandrus and Bouteloua gracilis
Rachel N. Ward
Dr. Jose Herrera, Faculty Mentor

Dark septate endophytic (DSE) fungi have been documented in helping plants survive extreme conditions. Although little is known about their exact ecological role, it is known that their symbiotic relationship plays an important role in vascular plants. In this study the percent coverage of DSE was assessed in the roots of Sporobolus cryptandrus (sand dropseed) and Bouteloua gracilis (blue grama) using digital imaging. Currently, the percent root coverage of DSE between the species of Sporobolus cryptandrus and Bouteloua gracilis are similar, but not related to plant inter-distance. As our results illustrate, DSE do not take over a whole root, but instead colonize small areas throughout the cortex. We believe that patterns of DSE coverage in roots are governed by nutrient or water availability.



Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 43-4
Location: VH 1432
Time: 3:30

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