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How plants make friends with fungi

Many fungi damage or even kill plants. But there are also plant-friendly fungi: Most land plants live in close community with arbuscular mycorrhiza fungi (AM fungi) that stimulate their growth. Researchers of the "Molecular Phytopathology" Group of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) study the development of this symbiosis. The scientists have now identified a gene that is specifically activated by AM fungi and influences the development of the plant root: The GRAS transcription factor MIG1 stimulates growth of more and larger root cortex cells.
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