Arbuscular Mycorrhizae as Defense against Pathogens
Probably the most relevant and widespread mutualistic symbiosis in the plant kingdom is the arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM). This association is formed between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and the vast majority of plants present in natural and cultivated systems (Jeffries and Barea, 2001). The establishment of this mutualistic association is a successful strategy to improve the nutritional status of both partners. The fungi, considered as biotrophic microorganisms, receive xed carbon compounds from the host plant, while the plant bene ts from the association by the increase in nutrient uptake via the fungal mycelium (Smith and Read, 1997).