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Carbon For Nutrient Exchange Between Lycopodiella Inundata And Mucoromycotina Fine Root Endophytes Is Unresponsive To High Atmospheric CO2

Grace A. Hoysted, Jill Kowal, Silvia Pressel, Jeffrey G. Duckett, Martin I. Bidartondo, Katie J. Field

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AbstractNon-vascular plants associating with arbuscular mycorrhizal (AMF) and Mucoromycotina ‘fine root endophyte’ (MFRE) fungi derive greater benefits from their fungal associates under higher atmospheric [CO2] (a[CO2]) than ambient; however, nothing is known about how changes in a[CO2] affect MFRE function in vascular plants. We measured movement of phosphorus (P), nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) between the lycophyte Lycopodiella inundata and Mucoromycotina fine root endophyte fungi using 33P-orthophosphate, 15 N-ammonium chloride and 14CO2 isotope tracers under ambient and elevated a[CO2] concentrations of 440 and 800 ppm, respectively. Transfers of 33P and 15 N from MFRE to plants were unaffected by changes in a[CO2]. There was a slight increase in C transfer from plants to MFRE under elevated a[CO2]. Our results demonstrate that the exchange of C-for-nutrients between a vascular plant and Mucoromycotina FRE is largely unaffected by changes in a[CO2]. Unravelling the role of MFRE in host plant nutrition and potential C-for-N trade changes between symbionts under different abiotic conditions is imperative to further our understanding of the past, present and future roles of plant-fungal symbioses in ecosystems.