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Orchid mycorrhizal interactions: evolutionary trajectories and ecological variations

The mycorrhizal symbiosis is among the most widespread species interactions on Earth⁠. This thesis focuses on orchid mycorrhiza, a unique mycorrhizal type that has caught scientists’ attention for centuries⁠.

Wang, D.
01 juni 2023
Thesis in Leiden Repository

By merging the concepts and approaches of molecular phylogenetics, microbial community ecology, and plant ecophysiology, this thesis provides an overview of the evolution and ecology of orchid mycorrhizal interactions from both the fungal and plant perspective, and from the global to the local scale⁠.

In this thesis, the variation in fungal associations in space and in time is a central topic, which was inferred by analyses on phylogenetic signals and variation in fungal community structure and also captured by empirical experiments using metabarcoding approaches and quantitative ddPCR⁠.

Based on the insights gained in this thesis and that of previous studies, this thesis proposes several directions for future studies to deepen our understanding of the evolution, ecophysiology, and molecular biology of mycorrhizal symbiosis, and thus to benefit orchid conservation and ecosystem restoration⁠.

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