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Open AccessArticle

Elevated Atmospheric CO2 Affects Ectomycorrhizal Species Abundance and Increases Sporocarp Production under Field Conditions

1
Institute of Forest Ecology, Universität für Bodenkultur (BOKU), 1190 Vienna, Austria
2
Global Change Research Centre, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Department of Landscape Carbon Deposition, Na Sádkách 7, České Budějovice 370 05, Czech Republic
3
Faculty of Life Sciences, University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9PT, UK
4
School of Environment, Natural Resources and Geography, Bangor University, LL57 2UW Gwynedd, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Eric J. Jokela
Forests 2015, 6(4), 1256-1273; https://doi.org/10.3390/f6041256
Received: 19 December 2014 / Revised: 5 March 2015 / Accepted: 7 April 2015 / Published: 21 April 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycorrhizal Fungi of Forests)
Anthropogenic activities during the last century have increased levels of atmospheric CO2. Forest net primary productivity increases in response to elevated CO2, altering the quantity and quality of carbon supplied to the rhizosphere. Ectomycorrhizal fungi form obligate symbiotic associations with the fine roots of trees that mediate improved scavenging for nutrients in exchange for a carbohydrate supply. Understanding how the community structure of ectomycorrhizal fungi is altered by climate change is important to further our understanding of ecosystem function. Betula pendula and Fagus sylvatica were grown in an elevated CO2 atmosphere delivered using free air carbon dioxide enrichment (FACE) under field conditions in the U.K., and Picea abies was grown under elevated CO2 in glass domes in the Czech Republic. We used morphotyping and sequencing of the internal transcribed spacer region of the fungal ribosomal operon to study ectomycorrhizal community structure. Under FACE, un-colonised roots tips increased in abundance for Fagus sylvatica, and during 2006, sporocarp biomass of Peziza badia significantly increased. In domes, ectomycorrhizal community composition shifted from short-distance and smooth medium-distance to contact exploration types. Supply and competition for carbon belowground can influence ectomycorrhizal community structure with the potential to alter ecosystem function. View Full-Text
Keywords: FACE; community structure; root tips; forest; hyphae; rhizomorph; morphotype; internal transcribed spacer (ITS); sequence FACE; community structure; root tips; forest; hyphae; rhizomorph; morphotype; internal transcribed spacer (ITS); sequence
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Godbold, D.L.; Vašutová, M.; Wilkinson, A.; Edwards-Jonášová, M.; Bambrick, M.; Smith, A.R.; Pavelka, M.; Cudlin, P. Elevated Atmospheric CO2 Affects Ectomycorrhizal Species Abundance and Increases Sporocarp Production under Field Conditions. Forests 2015, 6, 1256-1273.

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