Tuber magnatum (the white truffle) is the most precious species of the genus Tuber which comprises the hypogeous ectomycorrhizal species called “true truffle.” Despite its high economic value, the knowledge on its ecology is scant, principally due to the difficulty to find its mycorrhizas in the soil. The possibility to detect its mycelium by DNA extracted from soil has given a new chance for studying this truffle species. In this work, the co-occurrence of other Tuber species with T. magnatum mycelium was investigated by using species-specific primers in several productive areas located in central and northern Italy. Most (82%) of the examined soil samples showed at least one other Tuber species in addition to T. magnatum. The most common was T. maculatum (72% of soil samples) followed by T. borchii, T. rufum, T. brumale, T. dryophilum, T. macrosporum, and T. melanosporum (40%, 37%, 22%, 19%, 12%, and 1% of soil samples, respectively). Tuber aestivum was never detected in T. magnatum productive patches. Analysis of species co-occurrence showed that the pairwise associations between T. dryophilum-T. brumale, T. brumale-T. borchii, and T. borchii-T. dryophilum was significant. The results suggest that Tuber mycelial network in white truffle grounds is much more extensive than the distribution of their ectomycorrhizas and competitive exclusion between different Tuber species seems to take place only for root colonization.

Co-occurrence of true truffle mycelia in Tuber magnatum fruiting sites

Leonardi, Pamela;Puliga, Federico;Zambonelli, Alessandra
2021

Abstract

Tuber magnatum (the white truffle) is the most precious species of the genus Tuber which comprises the hypogeous ectomycorrhizal species called “true truffle.” Despite its high economic value, the knowledge on its ecology is scant, principally due to the difficulty to find its mycorrhizas in the soil. The possibility to detect its mycelium by DNA extracted from soil has given a new chance for studying this truffle species. In this work, the co-occurrence of other Tuber species with T. magnatum mycelium was investigated by using species-specific primers in several productive areas located in central and northern Italy. Most (82%) of the examined soil samples showed at least one other Tuber species in addition to T. magnatum. The most common was T. maculatum (72% of soil samples) followed by T. borchii, T. rufum, T. brumale, T. dryophilum, T. macrosporum, and T. melanosporum (40%, 37%, 22%, 19%, 12%, and 1% of soil samples, respectively). Tuber aestivum was never detected in T. magnatum productive patches. Analysis of species co-occurrence showed that the pairwise associations between T. dryophilum-T. brumale, T. brumale-T. borchii, and T. borchii-T. dryophilum was significant. The results suggest that Tuber mycelial network in white truffle grounds is much more extensive than the distribution of their ectomycorrhizas and competitive exclusion between different Tuber species seems to take place only for root colonization.
Leonardi, Pamela; Baroni, Riccardo; Puliga, Federico; Iotti, Mirco; Salerni, Elena; Perini, Claudia; Zambonelli, Alessandra
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/821581
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