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Botanical extract of chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) induces expression of resistance genes in Papaya fruit tree

Giovanni Chaves-Bedoya: Universidad Francisco de Paula Santander

<div>The papaya fruit tree is affected by different pests and diseases that significantly reduce its production, including viral diseases such as the <em>Papaya ringspot virus</em> (PRSV). PRSV remains a threat to the economic production of papaya worldwide. The use of molecules that promote defense mechanisms in plants turn out to be an alternative in the management of diseases in crops of agricultural importance, such as the papaya fruit tree. Three months old papaya plants were sprayed with 1) botanical extract of chamomile (<em>Matricaria chamomilla</em>) mixed with sulfur, 2) salicylic acid, 3) sulfur solution and 4) water as mock. The aim of the experiment was to test by semi quantitative PCR the ability of the botanical extract to induce the expression of the resistance genes MPK1 and PR1 after mechanically inoculation of PRSV. No statistically significant evidence was found in gene expression. However, we found a higher expression of resistance genes 3 dpi, compared to 7 dpi. Papaya plants sprayed with chamomile-sulfur presented less typical symptoms of the disease caused by PRSV, nevertheless showed moderate symptoms of phytotoxicity.</div>