In vitro mycorrhization and acclimatization of Amanita caesareoides and its relatives on Pinus densiflora.Mycorrhiza. 2013 May; 23(4):303-15.M
Amanita caesareoides is a sister species of Amanita caesarea, also known as Caesar's mushroom and one of the most desirable edible mycorrhizal mushrooms. However, cultivation of Caesar's mushrooms has not yet been successful due to the difficulties involved in establishing pure cultures. In this study, we established pure cultures of four Asian Caesar's mushroom species, i.e., A. caesareoides, Amanita javanica, Amanita esculenta, and Amanita similis, which were identified by sequence analysis of their rDNA internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region. Five selected isolates in A. caesareoides, A. javanica, and A. esculenta were tested for ectomycorrhizal syntheses with axenic Pinus densiflora seedlings in vitro. Ectomycorrhizal tips of each fungal isolate tested were observed on pine lateral roots within 5 months of inoculation. Seventeen pine seedlings that formed ectomycorrhizas in vitro with these three Amanita species were acclimatized under non-sterile conditions. Seven months following acclimatization, ectomycorrhizal colonization by A. caesareoides was observed on newly grown root tips, which was confirmed by polymerase chain reaction restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis of the fungal rDNA ITS region. Two other Amanita species also survived during ectomycorrhizal acclimatization. These results suggest that the cultivation of A. caesareoides and its relatives can be attempted through mycorrhizal synthesis using P. densiflora as a host. This is the first report of in vitro mycorrhization of Asian Caesar's mushrooms and their acclimatization under non-sterile conditions.