Comparison of Whole Plant and Detached Leaf Screening Techniques for Identifying Anthracnose Resistance in Strawberry Plants

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Biological Sciences


Biological, Environmental, and Earth Sciences


Anthracnose is a destructive disease of strawberry caused by several Colletotrichum species including C. acutatum, C. fragariae, and C. gloeosporioides. Identification of anthracnose resistant strawberry germplasm has commonly relied on inoculation of whole plants with isolates of these pathogens. In this study, whole plants and detached leaves from 81 germplasm lines were inoculated with a conidial suspension of isolates of C. acutatum, C. fragariae, and C. gloeosporioides, incubated in the dark at 30°C, 100% relative humidity, for 48 h, and assessed for disease severity based on symptoms on inoculated petioles and leaves. The correlation between the disease severity ratings of the whole plants rated 30 days after inoculation and detached leaves rated 5 days after inoculation was determined. Based on leaf symptoms and petiole lesions, the association between the whole plant leaf disease severity rating (DSR) and detached leaf DSR was positive (rp = 0.70), and the association between the whole plant DSR and the detached leaf DSR was also positive (rp = 0.66). Whole plant and detached leaf DSRs were used to assign each germplasm line to a resistance category, and a posthoc Tukey’s test showed that the whole plant DSR means and the detached leaf DSR means for each resistance category differed significantly at p < 0.05. This research was used to develop a strawberry detached leaf assay which can reliably and quickly determine the degree of resistance of strawberry germplasm to anthracnose.

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Plant Disease





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