a.) Transgenic plants
Due to GMO regulations, transgenic plants (derived from cultuvars Pinova and Remo) are only cultivated in a greenhouse and a S1-cage, field experiments are impossible. The transgenic lines carry two fungal chitinase genes conferring increased resistance against fungal pathogens (pBIN, Bolar et al. 2001). Transgenic plants were produced by the BAZ and are cultivated there.
b.) Wild-type plants
Roots of wild-type plant (cultivars Pinova and Remo) are collected in a conventionally managed orchard and an organically managed orchard in Dresden-Pillnitz.
a) Microscopic methods
Roots are washed and observed under a dissecting microsope to determine the number of ectomycorrhizal root tips. In order to identify the fungi involved in ECM formation, embedding in resin, thin sectioning and staining is necessary. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi can only be counted by this method, identification to species level is impossible.
b) Molecular tools
The dominant arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi will be identified via PCR and sequencing. Afterwards, a biochip will be developed that allows rapid identification of numerous samples. This will lead to a description of the abundance of AM fungi in different plant lines.