Balmas, Virgilio and Scherm, Barbara and Marcello, Angela and Beyer, Marco and Hoffmann, Lucien and Migheli, Quirico and Pasquali, Matias (2014) Fusarium species and chemotypes associated with Fusarium head blight and Fusarium root rot on wheat in Sardinia. Plant pathology , in press. ISSN 0032-0862. eISSN 1365-3059. Article.
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Environmental conditions in Sardinia (Tyrrhenian Islands) are conductive to Fusarium Root Rot (FRR) and Fusarium Head Blight (FHB). A monitoring survey on wheat was carried out during the years 2001-2013, investigating relations among these diseases and their incitants. FHB was more frequently encountered in the most recent years while FRR was constantly present throughout the monitored period. By assessing the population composition of the causal agents as well as their genetic chemotypes and EF 1-α polymorphisms, we tested whether the two diseases could be differentially associated to a species or a population. F. culmorum chemotypes are causing both diseases and were detected in different abundance (88% 3-AcDON, 12% NIV). F. graminearum (15-AcDON genetic chemotype) appeared only recently (2013) and in few areas as causal agent of FHB. In F. culmorum, two haplotypes were identified based on a mutation located at 34 bp after the first exon of the EF 1-α partial sequence [60% adenine (A) and 40% thymine (T)]. The two populations do not segregate with the chemotype but the A-haplotype was significantly associated to FRR in the Sardinian dataset (p=0.001) suggesting a possible fitness advantage of the A-haplotype in the establishment of FRR that was neither dependent on the sampling location nor the sampling year. The SNP determining the Sardinian haplotype is distributed worldwide. The question whether the A-haplotype segregates with characters facilitating FRR establishment shall be verified on a specifically sampled international dataset.
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