I. II. III. IV. V. VI. References SUMMARY: Mycorrhizal fungi can form common mycelial networks (CMNs) that interconnect plants. Here, we provide an insight into recent findings demonstrating that CMNs can be conduits for interplant signalling, influencing defence against insect herbivores and foliar necrotrophic fungi. A likely mechanism is direct transfer of signalling molecules within hyphae. However, electrical signals, which can be induced by wounding, may also enable signalling over relatively long distances, because the biophysical constraints imposed by liquid transport in hyphae and interaction with soil are relieved. We do not yet understand the ecological, evolutionary and agronomic implications of interplant signalling via CMNs. Identifying the mechanism of interplant signalling will help to address these gaps.
Bibliographical note© 2014 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.
We thank Martin Heil, two anonymous referees and Marc-Andre
Selosse for their comments. L.G. was supported by the Scottish
Government’s Rural and Environment Science and Analytical
Services Division (RESAS)
- electrical and chemical signalling
- volatile organic compunds (VOCs)