Studying influence of endosymbiotic fungi arbuscular mycorhizas on growth stimulation ability of some medicinal plants

In order to evaluate the growth of some popular medicinal plants in Vietnam, isolate suitable AM strains and evaluate the effects of these fungal strains on growth and the ability to stimulate biopharmaceuticals of some popular medicinal plants in Vietnam, Dr. Bui Van Cuong and a research team from the Institute of Tropical Technology, Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology, carried out the project “Study on the influence of endosymbiotic fungi arbuscular mycorhizas on the growth stimulation ability of some medicinal plants” (project code: GUST.STS.ĐT2019-HH02).

AM fungi are one of the two main forms of symbiotic mycorrhizas. In this symbiotic form, the mycelium penetrates the root cortex cells and forms vesicles or arbuscular cells. These structures increase the contact surface between the mycelium and the protoplasm of the root cell, making nutrient exchange between fungi and plants more efficient. The mycelium in the soil (or peripheral filaments) is very small in size and divides into many branches that weave in the soil and play the role of absorbing nutrients and forming spores. 

Figure 1. Arbuscular mycorrhizas (AM) 

The symbiosis of AM fungi brings a lot of benefits to plants, especially in abrasive areas. Moreover, the symbiosis of fungi also helps plants grow well and fight against pathogens in the soil. 

Solanum procumben is a small climbing plant, with a stem length of 60-100 cm, or higher, divided into many branches.  Leaves are ovate or oblong, ax-shaped or slightly rounded at the base. This species has a slightly bitter taste, warm nature. Roots contain starch and many other chemicals such as alkaloids and, glycoalkaloids and have the ability to protect liver cells very well, inhibit and make hepatitis virus negative, and prevent liver cirrhosis, and are thus used to treat liver related diseases.

Ehretia asperula is a woody vine that grows in tufts and is easy to grow. The trunk is in the form of a rope 3-10m long. The branches are round, pale gray when young, hairless, later turning brown, hairy, later green. Black cumin has healing effects such as opening the channel, diuretic, curing boils and sores, preventing cancer, anti-inflammatory, cooling the liver and gallbladder, helping the body eliminate toxins.

Figure 2. Plant biomass after the growth period of A) cycadsii and B) prickly pear. M+ and M- for trees with and without AM, respectively

This is the first study on symbiotic fungi on black cycads and acacia rhizomes in Vietnam. The objective was to evaluate the symbiotic ability of AM fungi in some medicinal plants in Vietnam (Cranberry, prickly pear and periwinkle), and at the same time to evaluate the influence of AM fungi on the growth of these plants. from the above drug, from which the main AM symbiotic fungal strains were identified, serving as a scientific basis for the preparation of symbiotic fungal preparations to serve to increase the yield and quality of medicinal plants.

Figure 3. Morphology of AM fungal spores isolated in the soil of thorny thorns and blackberries

The research team detected the symbiosis of AM fungi on medicinal plants Ehretia asperula and Solanum procumben, but did not detect symbiosis in samples of periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus). The main symbiotic AM strain on the above medicinal plants was identified as Rhizophagus intradices. After inoculating the fungus and reinfecting the medicinal plants, the results showed a clear effect of the symbiotic fungi on the growth of medicinal plants (mustard and prickly pear), when compared with the control plants without symbiotic fungi. The fungal symbiosis was shown to increase the accumulated polyphenol content in the mass of medicinal plants. 

The results obtained from the project will serve as a scientific basis for the application of AM mushrooms in medicinal gardens. The process of growing medicinal herbs uses a lot of chemical fertilizers to help plants grow well in terms of biomass, but reduces the number of accumulated drugs. Therefore, the increased use of growth stimulants from microorganisms will limit the above adverse factors of chemical fertilizers.


Translated by Phuong Ha
Link to Vietnamese version

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