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Open AccessArticle

Phosphorus Mobilizing Enzymes of Alnus-Associated Ectomycorrhizal Fungi in an Alaskan Boreal Floodplain

1
Institute of Arctic Biology, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK 99775, USA
2
U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA 94025, USA
3
Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2019, 10(7), 554; https://doi.org/10.3390/f10070554
Received: 1 June 2019 / Revised: 28 June 2019 / Accepted: 28 June 2019 / Published: 2 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecto- and Endomycorrhizal Relationships in Forest Trees)
Because of its high phosphorus (P) demands, it is likely that the abundance, distribution, and N-fixing capacity of Alnus in boreal forests are tightly coupled with P availability and the mobilization and uptake of soil P via ectomycorrhizal fungi (EMF). We examined whether Alnus shifts EMF communities in coordination with increasingly more complex organic P forms across a 200-year-old successional sequence along the Tanana River in interior Alaska. Root-tip activities of acid phosphatase, phosphodiesterase, and phytase of A. tenuifolia-associated EMF were positively intercorrelated but did not change in a predictable manner across the shrub, to hardwood to coniferous forest successional sequence. Approximately half of all Alnus roots were colonized by Alnicola and Tomentella taxa, and ordination analysis indicated that the EMF community on Alnus is a relatively distinct, host-specific group. Despite differences in the activities of the two Alnus dominants to mobilize acid phosphatase and phosphodiesterase, the root-tip activities of P-mobilizing enzymes of the Alnus-EMF community were not dramatically different from other co-occurring boreal plant hosts. This suggests that if Alnus has a greater influence on P cycling than other plant functional types, additional factors influencing P mobilization and uptake at the root and/or whole-plant level must be involved. View Full-Text
Keywords: Alnus; phosphorus; ectomycorrhizae; acid phosphatase; phosphodiesterase; phytase; boreal forest; Alaska Alnus; phosphorus; ectomycorrhizae; acid phosphatase; phosphodiesterase; phytase; boreal forest; Alaska
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Ruess, R.W.; Swanson, M.M.; Kielland, K.; McFarland, J.W.; Olson, K.D.; Taylor, D.L. Phosphorus Mobilizing Enzymes of Alnus-Associated Ectomycorrhizal Fungi in an Alaskan Boreal Floodplain. Forests 2019, 10, 554.

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