Mycorrhiza-Induced Alleviation of Plant Disease Caused by Clavibacter michiganensis Subsp. Michiganensis and Role of Ethylene in Mycorrhiza-Induced Resistance in Tomato


The protective role of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) against the phytopathogen Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. michiganensis (Cmm) was examined in tomato plants. Seven different AMF isolates were used to determine which ones were able to induce effectively resistance against Cmm. Stems of seven-week tomato plants were infected with Cmm, then a disease severity index (DSI) was determined during the next three weeks. In addition to different responses to mycorrhizal inoculation, three levels of responses to the bacterial disease were recognized in treatments. Plants inoculated with Rhizophagus irregularis (Ri) showed both the highest colonization and the highest induced resistance to Cmm while the effect of Funneliformis mosseae, Gigaspora margarita and Claroideoglomus claroideum on mycorrhizal colonization and on the induced resistance were intermediate and high, respectively. Subsequently, Ri was chosen to inoculate ethylene-insensitive tomato mutant line Never ripe (Nr) and its background (Pearson) to investigate the possible role of ethylene (ET) in the mycorrhiza-induced resistance (MIR). The results showed that Ri could induce systemic resistance against Cmm in the Pearson background, whereas ET-insensitivity in Nr plants impaired MIR. These results suggest that ET is required for Ri-induced resistance against Cmm. To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine the effect of different AMF isolates on the response of tomato plants to Cmm and involvement of ET in MIR against Cmm.



arbuscular mycorrhizal


arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi


Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. michiganensis


Claroideoglomus claroideum


disease severity index




Funneliformis geosporum


Funneliformis mosseae


Gigaspora margarita


mycorrhiza-induced resistance


Septoglomus constrictum


Rhizophagus irregularis


Rhizophagus sp.


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The study was funded by Stipendium Hungaricum and Research Centre of Excellence 1476-4/2016/FEKUT. The authors thank Dr. Turoczi Gyorgy, Institute of Plant Protection, Szent István University, for useful advices during the study. We also would like to thank Tomato Genetics Resource Center (University of California, UC) for kindly providing tomato seeds of Never ripe mutant and its background Pearson.

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Correspondence to Katalin Posta.

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Duc, N.H., Posta, K. Mycorrhiza-Induced Alleviation of Plant Disease Caused by Clavibacter michiganensis Subsp. Michiganensis and Role of Ethylene in Mycorrhiza-Induced Resistance in Tomato. BIOLOGIA FUTURA 69, 170–181 (2018).

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  • Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. michiganensis
  • arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi
  • mycorrhiza-induced resistance
  • tomato
  • ethylene