, Volume 75, Issue 1, pp 39–50 | Cite as

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi associated with Leptospermum scoparium (mānuka): effects on plant growth and essential oil content

  • Wisnu Adi Wicaksono
  • Catherine E. Sansom
  • E. Eirian Jones
  • Nigel B. Perry
  • Jana Monk
  • Hayley J. Ridgway


Leptospermum scoparium or mānuka is a New Zealand native medicinal plant that produces essential oils with antimicrobial properties. This study investigated the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) community in mānuka by culture dependent (trap culture) and independent (denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis) approaches. Furthermore, to assess whether mycorrhizal inoculation could alter growth and essential oil composition of mānuka, plants of a single regional chemotype were grown in unsterilized soil and inoculated with five AMF isolates. Leaf essential oil compositions and yields were determined by microscale solvent extraction and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis. AMF inoculation significantly increased growth compared to uninoculated plants. Qualitative i.e. different relative proportions of compounds, which are distinctive in chemotypes and quantitative (i.e. absolute concentrations of compounds, expressed as mg/g of dry leaf or equivalent) effects of AMF inoculation on mānuka essential oil composition depended on the isolate. AMF inoculation modified the Gammaproteobacterial community on roots and this may have contributed to changes in essential oil composition. Overall, these results demonstrated that AMF can improve the growth of mānuka and affect plant secondary metabolites in leaves, which would be valuable in commercial essential oil production from plantation-grown mānuka.


Leptospermum scoparium Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi GC-MS analysis Essential oils Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis Gammaproteobacteria 



The authors thank Brent Richards for assistance with the glasshouse experiment; the Brian Mason Scientific and Technical Trust and New Zealand Aid Programme for funding; and farm owners and Christchurch City Council for supplying plant samples.

Supplementary material

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Online Resource 1

Soils and roots sampling process for microbial community structure (JPEG 192 kb)

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High resolution image (TIFF 2986 kb)
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Online Resource 2

Morphotypes M1-M7 (A-G) of representative arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi spores that were isolated using trap cultures. Black bar represents 100 μm (JPEG 63 kb)

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High resolution image (TIFF 1607 kb)
13199_2017_506_MOESM3_ESM.pdf (60 kb)
Online Resource 3 Sequenced bands excised from DGGE gel of amplified arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities with their highest matches (PDF 59 kb)
13199_2017_506_Fig4_ESM.jpg (210 kb)
Online Resource 4

Nonmetric multidimensional scaling (MDS) plots showing arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities associated with Leptospermum scoparium from different regions in New Zealand. Central North Island:green diamond, northern South Island: Central South Island: red square: blue triangle, southern South Island: ●. Abbreviation of sampling location referred to Table 1 (JPEG 210 kb)

13199_2017_506_MOESM4_ESM.tiff (943 kb)
High resolution image (TIFF 943 kb)
13199_2017_506_MOESM5_ESM.pdf (62 kb)
Online Resource 5 Composition of foliage essential oils in Leptospermum scoparium (Canterbury chemotype) after five months growth (n = 6 different arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi inoculation treatments × 4 replicate plants per treatment) (PDF 62 kb)
13199_2017_506_MOESM6_ESM.pdf (66 kb)
Online Resource 6 Mean of foliage essential oils in Leptospermum scoparium (Canterbury chemotype) after five months growth from each treatment (n = 6 different arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi inoculation treatments × 4 replicate plants per treatment) (PDF 65 kb)
13199_2017_506_MOESM7_ESM.pdf (43 kb)
Online Resource 7 Pearson correlation analysis of 41 essential oil compounds used to determine the effect of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi inoculation treatments toward essential oil composition (PDF 42 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wisnu Adi Wicaksono
    • 1
  • Catherine E. Sansom
    • 2
  • E. Eirian Jones
    • 1
  • Nigel B. Perry
    • 2
  • Jana Monk
    • 1
  • Hayley J. Ridgway
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Agriculture and Life SciencesLincoln UniversityLincolnNew Zealand
  2. 2.The New Zealand Institute for Plant & Food Research Limited, Department of ChemistryUniversity of OtagoDunedinNew Zealand

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