Mycorrhizal Symbioses (Definition)
Mycorrhizal symbiosis refers the intimate beneficial association of certain groups of soil fungi with the root systems of higher plants. These associations create a specialized root structure, which facilitates nutrient uptake and exchange between both partners (plant-fungi).
The plant provides the
fungus with sources of carbon (glucose and fructose from photosynthetic processes).
In return, the fungus provides the plant with nutrients, and water in amounts
greater than the plant would be able to obtain alone. This nutrient exchange
between both symbionts is mutualistic (mutually beneficial).
Mycorrhizal symbioses are classified according to their colonization patterns in roots:
1. Ectotrophic mycorrhizal symbiosis:
2. Endotrophic mycorrhizal symbiosis: