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Crop Biotech Update

Mycorrhiza Fungus Aids in Designing Better Crop Root System

May 6, 2015

Mycorrhizal fungus in plants aid in the uptake and utilization of phosphorus (P) from the soil limiting the needs of farmers for phosphate fertilizers to attain maximum yield. This capability of mycorrhizal fungus suggests its possible use as a biofertilizer. University of Cambridge researchers examined this capability of mycorrhizal fungus by analyzing its mutualistic relationship with rice.

The findings of their study reveal that the colonization of mycorrhizal fungus in adult rice causes changes in genetic expression. This has resulted to softening of crown roots triggering lateral root growth that enables more nutrient absorption. Dr. Uta Paszkowski, one of the researchers in the study believed that this result will help in breeding and designing crops with better root architecture to attain the best possible root for greater yield.

Read full details of the story at University of Cambridge's website.