The volatile organic compounds (VOCs) produced by soil microbes modulated plant growth and development. Floccularia luteovirens, an edible mushroom, is beneficial to the growth of alpine meadow plants on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. We aimed to elucidate the physiological and molecular mechanisms underlying the mushroom fungal VOC-mediated plant growth and development.
Researchers at Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qinghai Normal University, TianShui Normal University, and Shanxi Agricultural University investigated the effects of VOCs produced by F. luteovirens on the root system development and seedling growth by integrating physiology, genetics, transcriptome and metabolome analysis using 1/2 MS medium-grown Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings. Treatment with F. luteovirens VOCs reduce primary root growth by aggravating auxin accumulation through the repression of the abundance of auxin efflux carrier PIN-FORMED 2 (PIN2) protein, whereas it increases the lateral root number of A. thaliana seedlings. In addition to modulating root system architecture, treatment with F. luteovirens VOCs markedly increased aboveground growth. The transcriptome and metabolome analyses further supported the notion that F. luteovirens VOCs modulate plant growth and development through the induction of carbon/nitrogen metabolism and antioxidant defense while repressing several secondary metabolism and amino acid catabolism pathways. These results suggested that application of F. luteovirens VOCs promote growth by inducing changes in root system architecture through auxin pathway and regulating metabolism in plants.
This work was published in September in Plant and Soil. Prof. ZHOU Huakun at Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology of Chinese Academy of Sciences is a corresponding author, who is also a doctoral supervisor at University of Chinese Academy of Sciences.