Division of Plant Pathology and Microbiology in Plant Sciences Department
Research project:
Accumulation and transport of shikonins by soil fungi

The naphthoquinone derivatives in the shikonin family are toxic to many soil microorganisms which respond to the chemicals in many different ways. The confocal micrograph above, shows the accumulation of shikonins on a spore of the obligate mycorrhizal fungus Glomus intraradices. This accumulation occurs on less 5% of the spores suggesting a sequestration mechanism to protect the other spores. The study of this mechanism will shed light not only on microbial strategies for foiling plant defenses, but also on chemical transport between fungi and plant.
For more information: Dr. Lindy Brigham, lbrigham@ag.arizona.edu
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