Potential verification of a host plant for the desert truffle Terfezia pfeilii by molecular methods

Varda Kagan-Zur, Jianbo Kuang, S. Tabak, Frank W. Taylor, Nurit Bejerano

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26 Scopus citations


The ITS region of the rRNA genes was amplified using DNA extracted from Terfezia pfeilii fruit-bodies. Two types of restriction fragment profiles were revealed among 11 fruit-bodies by the Hinf I restriction enzyme. An additional four truffles collected from the same field one year later were found to have a mixed profile combining both types. Germinated spores from one of these mixed-profile individuals had a single profile belonging to one or the other of the two types. Roots collected around and underneath one Terfezia fruit-body were traced to different plants. Roots of a watermelon plant (Citrullus vulgaris) showed a non-vesicular-arbuscular endomycorrhizal association. Restricted ITS amplification fragments of mycorrhized roots from C. vulgaris were shown to match T. pfeilii fruit-body ITS-RFLP fragments. The significance of this finding with regard to T. pfeilii potential host range is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1270-1274
Number of pages5
JournalMycological Research
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1999


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