Title
Reciprocal rewards stabilize cooperation in the mycorrhizal symbiosis Reciprocal rewards stabilize cooperation in the mycorrhizal symbiosis
Author
Faculty/Department
Faculty of Sciences. Biology
Publication type
article
Publication
Washington, D.C. ,
Subject
Biology
Source (journal)
Science / American Association for the Advancement of Science. - Washington, D.C.
Volume/pages
333(2012) :6044 , p. 880-882
ISSN
0036-8075
1095-9203
Carrier
E
Target language
English (eng)
Full text (Publishers DOI)
Abstract
Plants and their arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal symbionts interact in complex underground networks involving multiple partners. This increases the potential for exploitation and defection by individuals, raising the question of how partners maintain a fair, two-way transfer of resources. We manipulated cooperation in plants and fungal partners to show that plants can detect, discriminate, and reward the best fungal partners with more carbohydrates. In turn, their fungal partners enforce cooperation by increasing nutrient transfer only to those roots providing more carbohydrates. On the basis of these observations we conclude that, unlike many other mutualisms, the symbiont cannot be enslaved. Rather, the mutualism is evolutionarily stable because control is bidirectional, and partners offering the best rate of exchange are rewarded.
E-info
https://repository.uantwerpen.be/docman/iruaauth/72029e/128284.pdf