Interactions between a Root Knot Nematode (Meloidogyne exigua) and Arbuscular Mycorrhizae in Coffee Plant Development (Coffea arabica)


This paper focuses on parasitic root knot nematodes (Meloidogyne exigua) and how to decrease their pathogenic effect on coffee plants (Coffea arabica), by examining the behaviour of and the interactions between nematodes, coffee plant and arbuscular mycorrhizae (AM). The experiment was carried out at the seedling stage, with six (6) treatments (plants with M. exigua, plants with arbuscular mycorrhizae, plants with both organisms, and the same time, first mycorrhizae plants, then nematodes were inoculated and vice versa). After 5 months the measured variables were: dry biomass (roots and shoot), nematode knots caused by M. exigua in root, nematode juvenile (J2) found in 100.0 g of soil, and mycorrhizal percentage. Plant nutrients (P and N) contents were analysed. Significant differences were found in all the variables, but concentration N content in plants. Plants with mycorrhizae and plants with mycorrhizae and then inoculated with nematodes have the same behaviour. Control plants and plants with nematode and then inoculated with mycorrhizae behave similarly. It is thought that arbuscular mycorrhizae are formed before the nematode infestation, allowing coffee plants to regain the energy lost by the parasitic interaction. AM may help coffee plants with lignifications of the plant cell wall cuticle. As the cuticle thickens it is more difficult for nematodes to penetrate and enter into plant roots. Therefore, arbuscular mycorrhizae help coffee plants to uptake and transport nutrients, improving its nutritional status and stabilizing nematode attacks. It is suggested that symbiotic interactions help neutralize parasitic interactions.

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R. Alban, R. Guerrero and M. Toro, "Interactions between a Root Knot Nematode (Meloidogyne exigua) and Arbuscular Mycorrhizae in Coffee Plant Development (Coffea arabica)," American Journal of Plant Sciences, Vol. 4 No. 7B, 2013, pp. 19-23. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2013.47A2003.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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