عنوان مقاله [English]
Ectomycorrhizal symbiosis is essential for the establishment and functioning of trees in forest ecosystems. Truffles, belonging to the Tuber genus, are ectomycorrhizal fungi that produce hypogeous fruiting bodies (ascocarps) that are highly prized as a food delicacy. Following the research on the identification of ectomycorrhizal fungi in forest trees of Iran, some samples of forest truffle fungi were collected from areas of Golestan province and identified as summer truffle (T. aestivum Vittad(. based on macroscopic and microscopic characteristics. The visits revealed that the unprocessed and unauthorized harvest of the fungus has become major employment for indigenous peoples, damaging the survival of the fungus and natural resources. The presence of this fungus in the country as the most widespread forest truffle with high genetic diversity among the isolates is a very valuable resource for Iran which is potentially at risk due to habitat losses, increasing harvest, and environmental change. Declining populations of this fungus have been reported in some parts of the world. In certain Central, North and East European countries T. aestivum is included in the Red Lists of endangered species. Therefore, European countries have enacted laws to protect and exploit this valuable species. Conservation strategies for T. aestivum are proposed based on the current understanding of the ecology of this species.