Soil and Water Research Center

Muscat, Oman

Soil and Water Research Center

Muscat, Oman
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Al-Yahya'ei M.N.,University of Basel | Al-Yahya'ei M.N.,CNR Plant Protection Institute | Al-Yahya'ei M.N.,Soil and Water Research Center | Oehl F.,University of Basel | And 7 more authors.
Mycorrhiza | Year: 2011

The main objective of this study was to shed light on the previously unknown arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) communities in Southern Arabia. We explored AMF communities in two date palm (Phoenix dactylifera) plantations and the natural vegetation of their surrounding arid habitats. The plantations were managed traditionally in an oasis and according to conventional guidelines at an experimental station. Based on spore morphotyping, the AMF communities under the date palms appeared to be quite diverse at both plantations and more similar to each other than to the communities under the ruderal plant, Polygala erioptera, growing at the experimental station on the dry strip between the palm trees, and to the communities uncovered under the native vegetation (Zygophyllum hamiense, Salvadora persica, Prosopis cineraria, inter-plant area) of adjacent undisturbed arid habitat. AMF spore abundance and species richness were higher under date palms than under the ruderal and native plants. Sampling in a remote sand dune area under Heliotropium kotschyi yielded only two AMF morphospecies and only after trap culturing. Overall, 25 AMF morphospecies were detected encompassing all study habitats. Eighteen belonged to the genus Glomus including four undescribed species. Glomus sinuosum, a species typically found in undisturbed habitats, was the most frequently occurring morphospecies under the date palms. Using molecular tools, it was also found as a phylogenetic taxon associated with date palm roots. These roots were associated with nine phylogenetic taxa, among them eight from Glomus group A, but the majority could not be assigned to known morphospecies or to environmental sequences in public databases. Some phylogenetic taxa seemed to be site specific. Despite the use of group-specific primers and efficient trapping systems with a bait plant consortium, surprisingly, two of the globally most frequently found species, Glomus intraradices and Glomus mosseae, were not detected neither as phylogenetic taxa in the date palm roots nor as spores under the date palms, the intermediate ruderal plant, or the surrounding natural vegetation. The results highlight the uniqueness of AMF communities inhabiting these diverse habitats exposed to the harsh climatic conditions of Southern Arabia. © 2010 The Author(s).


Symanczik S.,University of Basel | Blaszkowski J.,West Pomeranian University of Technology | Chwat G.,West Pomeranian University of Technology | Boller T.,University of Basel | And 3 more authors.
Mycologia | Year: 2014

Three new species of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi (Glomeromycota) were isolated from soil samples collected from a hyperarid sandy plain of South Arabia. Morphological characteristics of the spores clearly differentiated them from closely related AM species. Molecular analyses were performed on rDNA sequences obtained from single spores including a,1700 bp region comprising partial SSU, ITS, partial LSU and the,600 bp ITS region only. The phylogenetic trees based on these regions showed that the three species belong to well described genera but are clearly distinct from known species. Consequently, we describe them here as Diversispora omaniana, Septoglomus nakheelum and Rhizophagus arabicus spp. nov. D. omaniana and R. arabicus were isolated from the native, arid habitat, while S. nakheelum was isolated from a nearby irrigated date palm plantation. The discovery of three new species of AM fungi from this location suggests that a number of additional undescribed AM taxa may be present in such desert ecosystems. Further work to understand the diversity and functional significance of these new AM taxa may offer new opportunities for conservation, re-vegetation, and sustainable agriculture in extremely arid environments. © 2014 by The Mycological Society of America.


Symanczik S.,University of Basel | Blaszkowski J.,West Pomeranian University of Technology | Koegel S.,University of Basel | Boller T.,University of Basel | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Arid Land | Year: 2014

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are known to facilitate the growth and vigour of many plants, particularly in arid ecosystems. In a survey of AMF in a date palm plantation and two natural sites of a desert in Oman, we generated many single spore-derived cultures of AMF. We identified a number of these isolates based on spore morphotyping and molecular phylogenetic analysis using the sequence of the LSU-rDNA. Here, we presented the characteristics of four species of AMF recovered, namely Claroideoglomus drummondii, Diversispora aurantia, Diversispora spurca and Funneliformis africanum. The four species have been described previously, but for the Arabian Peninsula they are reported here for the first time. Our endeavor of isolation and characterization of some AMF habituated to arid sites of Arabia represents a first step towards application for environmental conservation and sustainable agriculture in this region. © 2014 Science Press, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.


Ladoni M.,Tarbiat Modares University | Bahrami H.A.,Tarbiat Modares University | Alavipanah S.K.,University of Tehran | Norouzi A.A.,Soil and Water Research Center
Precision Agriculture | Year: 2010

Soil organic carbon (SOC) concentration is a useful soil property with which to guide agricultural applications of chemical inputs. To enable this, simple, accurate, rapid and inexpensive methods are needed to produce maps of surface SOC concentrations. Researchers have investigated estimates of soil surface properties from remotely sensed information as a means of rapidly quantifying and monitoring some surface soil properties, such as SOC. The objective of this paper is to review the potential and limitations of remotely sensed data for mapping and evaluating SOC. Several statistical methods including simple regression models, the 'soil line' approach, principal component analysis and geostatistics have been applied to data to investigate the accuracy of such estimates. A review of the literature shows that predictive equations are not universal and require new regression models for every scene. An important benefit of remotely sensed data is to suggest a sampling strategy that can lead to improved representation of spatial heterogeneity in SOC. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009.


Symanczik S.,University of Basel | Symanczik S.,Research Institute of Organic Agriculture | Courty P.-E.,University of Basel | Boller T.,University of Basel | And 4 more authors.
Mycorrhiza | Year: 2015

Field studies have revealed the impact of changing water regimes on the structure of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) communities, but it is not known what happens to the abundance of individual AMF species within the community when the water conditions in the rhizosphere change. The behavior of four AMF species isolated from the Arabian desert (Diversispora aurantia, Diversispora omaniana, Septoglomus africanum, and an undescribed Paraglomus species) was investigated when assembled in microcosms containing Sorghum bicolor as host plant, and treated with various water regimes. Furthermore, the impact of invasion of these assemblages by Rhizophagus irregularis, an AMF species widely used in commercial inocula, was studied. The abundance of each AMF species in sorghum roots was measured by determining the transcript numbers of their large ribosomal subunit (rLSU) by real-time PCR, using cDNA and species-specific primers. Plant biomass and length of AMF extraradical hyphae were also measured. The abundance of each AMF species within the sorghum roots was influenced by both the water regime and the introduction of R. irregularis. Under dry conditions, the introduction of R. irregularis reduced the total abundance of all native AMF species in roots and also led to a reduction in the amount of extraradical mycelium, as well as to a partial decrease in plant biomass. The results indicate that both water regime and the introduction of an invasive AMF species can strongly alter the structure of an AMF native assemblage with a consequent impact on the entire symbiotic mycorrhizal relationship. © 2015, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

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