Phone: (605) 688-5463
Mailing Address:
Biology & Microbiology
Biology & Mircobiology-Box 2140D
Brookings, SD 57007


Heike Bucking


General Position Description:
Specialty Area:
Beneficial plant-microbe interactions
Areas of Study/Academic Interests:
Regulation of nutrient uptake, transport and exchange processes in arbuscular mycorrhizal interactions
1995 Ph.D. University of Bremen, Germany
Teaching Responsibilities:
MICR 231: General Microbiology; MICR 436: Molecular and Microbial Genetics; BIOS 699: Molecular Plant Physiology;
Research/Scholarship Responsibilities:
Research on arbuscular mycorrhizal interactions, teaching of General Microbiology, and Microbioal Genetics course
Professional Memberships:
International Mycorrhiza Society American Society of Plant Biologists Deutscher Hochschullehrer Verband International Symbiosis Society Gamma Sigma Delta Honor Society of Agriculture
Committee Activities:
Chair - Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability Committee Faculty search committees, Graduate committees
1. NSF: Cooperation and punishment in the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis 2. NSF: REU: Interdisciplinary research experiences for undergraduates on bioenergy: feedstock, bioprocessing and environmental sustainability; 3. US-Egypt Cooperative Research: Increasing the P uptake efficiency of wheat through mycorrhizal interactions and plant growth promoting bacteria; 4. SD Wheat Commission: Potential Use of arbuscular mycrorrhizal fungi as bioprotectors against common wheat pathogens in SD; 5. SD Wheat commission: Increasing the cost-efficiency of South Dakota wheat production by phosphate efficient wheat cultivars 6. Sun Grant Initiative: Beneficial plant-microbe interactions and their potential to increase biomass production and sustainability in prairie cordgrass. 7. JGI: Exploring the transcriptome of perennial grasses in association with beneficial microorganisms to increase biomass production and environmental sustainability of bioenergy production.
Wang X, Bücking H. 2015. Arbuscular mycorrhizal growth and phosphate uptake responses are fungal specific, but do not differ between a soybean genotype with a high and a low phosphate acquisition efficiency. Annals of Botany submitted. Mensah JA, Koch AM, Antunes PM, Hart M, Bücking H. 2015. High functional diversity within arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal species is correlated to differences in phosphate and nitrogen uptake and fungal phosphate metabolism. Mycorrhiza, in press. Fellbaum CR, Mensah JA, Cloos AJ, Strahan GE, Pfeffer PE, Kiers ET, Bücking H. 2014. Fungal nutrient allocation in common mycelia networks is regulated by the carbon source strength of individual host plants. New Phytologist 203: 646-656, DOI: 10.1111/nph.12827. Knegt B, Jansa J, Franken O, Engelmoer DJP, Werner GDA, Bücking H, Kiers ET. 2014. Host plant quality mediates competition between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Fungal Ecology: DOI:10.1016/j.funeco.2014.09.011 Duhamel M, Pel R, Ooms A, Bücking H, Jansa J, Ellers J, van Straalen NM, Wouda T, Vandenkoornhuyse, Kiers ET. 2013. Do fungivores trigger the transfer of protective metabolites from host plants to arbuscular mycorrhizal hyphae? Ecology 94: 2019-2029; Hart MM, Forsythe J, Ohsowski B, Jansa J, Bücking H, Kiers ET. 2012. Hidden in the crowd - diversity facilitates the persistence of low-quality fungal partners in the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis. Symbiosis, DOI: 10.1007/s13199-012-0197-8. Fellbaum CR, Mensah JA, Pfeffer PE, Kiers ET, Bücking H. in print. The role of carbon in fungal nutrient uptake and transport: implications for resource exchange in the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis. Plant Signaling and Behavior 11:1509-1512. Bücking H, Liepold E, Ambilwade P. 2012. The role of the mycorrhizal symbiosis in nutrient uptake of plants and the regulatory mechanisms underlying these transport processes. In: Plant Science; Dhal NK and Sahu SC (eds.). Intech, Rijeka, pp. 107-138; DOI: 10.5772/52570. Verbruggen E, El Mouden C, Jansa J, Ackermanns G, Bücking H, West SA, Kiers T. 2012. Spatial structure and inter-specific cooperation: theory and an empirical test using the mycorrhizal mutualism. American Naturalist 179, E133-E146. Fellbaum CR, Gachomo EW, Beesetty Y, Choudhari S, Strahan GD, Pfeffer PE, Kiers ET, Bücking H. 2012. Carbon availability triggers fungal nitrogen uptake and transport in the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, USA, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1118650109. Kiers ET, Duhamel M, Beesetty Y, Mensah JA, Franken O, Verbruggen E, Fellbaum CR, Kowalchuk GA, Hart MM, Bago A, Palmer TM, West SA, Vandenkoornhuye P, Jansa J, Bücking H. 2011. Reciprocal rewards stabilize cooperation in the mycorrhizal symbiosis. Science 330: 880-882. Bücking H. 2011. Ectomycoremediation: an eco-friendly technique for the remediation of polluted sites? In: Diversity and biotechnology of ectomycorrhiza. M. Rai, A. Varma (eds.) Springer Book Series: Soil Biology, Springer-Verlag, Heidelberg. Tian C., Kasiborski B., Koul R., Lammers P.E., Bücking H., Shachar-Hill Y. (2010). Regulation of the nitrogen transfer pathway in the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis: gene characterization and the coordination of expression with nitrogen flux. Plant Physiology, DOI:10.1104/pp.110.156430 Dürr J., Bücking H., Mult S., Wildhagen H., Palme K., Rennenberg H., Ditgenou F., Herschbach C. (2010). Seasonal and cell type specific expression of sulfate transporters in the phloem of Populus reveals tree specific characteristics for SO42- storage and mobilization. Plant Molecular Biology 72:499-517. Guenther J., Hallen H., Bücking H., Shachar-Hill Y., Trail F. (2009). Triacylglyceride metabolism by Fusarium graminearum during colonization and sexual development on wheat. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interaction 22: 1492-1503. Gachomo E., Allen J.W., Pfeffer P.E., Govindarajulu M., Douds D.D., Jin H., Nagahashi G., Lammers P.J., Shachar-Hill Y., Bücking H. (2009). Germinating spores of Glomus intraradices can use internal and exogenous nitrogen sources for a de novo biosynthesis of amino acids. New Phytologist, 184: 399-411. Bücking H., Abubaker J., Govindarajulu M., Tala M., Pfeffer P.E., Nagahashi G., Lammers P., Shachar-Hill Y. (2008). Root exudates stimulate the uptake and metabolism of organic carbon in germinating spores of Glomus intraradices. New Phytologist 180: 684-695. Bücking H., Hans R., Heyser W. (2007). The apoplast of ectomycorrhizal roots – site of nutrient uptake and nutrient exchange between the symbiotic partners. In: The apoplast of higher plants: compartment of storage, transport and reactions. B. Sattelmacher, W.J. Horst (eds). Springer, Dordrecht, pp. 97-108. Bücking H., Shachar-Hill Y. (2005). Phosphate uptake, transport and transfer by the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus Glomus intraradices is stimulated by increased carbohydrate availability. New Phytologist 165, 899-912. Govindarajulu M., Pfeffer P.E., Jin H., Abubaker J., Douds D.D., Allen J.W., Bücking H., Lammers P.J., Shachar-Hill Y. (2005). Nitrogen transfer in the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis. Nature 435: 819-823.
Awards & Honors:
Woman of Distinction, Faculty Award, South Dakota State University, 2012; Gamma Sigma Delta Research Award 2014; College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences, Outstanding Researcher Award 2015
Former Positions Held:
2005-2008: Rutgers, State University of New Jersey, Camden, Assistant Professor 2004: Michigan State University, East Lansing, Visiting Research Professor 2002-2004: Michigan State University, East Lansing, Postdoctoral Scientist 1996-2002: University of Bremen, Germany, Postdoctoral Scientist