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Effect of Carbendazim Resistance on Trichothecene Production and Aggressiveness of Fusarium graminearum

September 2009 , Volume 22 , Number  9
Pages  1,143 - 1,150

Yan-Jun Zhang,1 Jun-Jie Yu,1 Yan-Nan Zhang,1 Xiao Zhang,1 Chang-Jun Cheng,1 Jan-Xin Wang,1 Derek W. Hollomon,2 Ping-Sheng Fan,1 and Ming-Guo Zhou1

1Department of Plant Pathology, College of Plant Protection, Nanjing Agricultural University, Key Laboratory of Monitoring and Management of Crop Diseases and Pest Insects, Ministry of Agriculture, Nanjing 210095, China; 2Department of Biochemistry, University of Bristol, School of Medical Sciences, University Walk, Bristol, BS8 1TD, U.K.

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Accepted 7 May 2009.

Fusarium graminearum (teleomorph, Gibberella zeae) causes head blight of cereals and contaminates grains with trichothecene mycotoxins that are harmful to humans and domesticated animals. Control of Fusarium head blight relies on carbendazim (MBC) in China, but resistance to MBC in F. graminearum is now widespread. Sixty-seven strains were evaluated for trichothecene production in shake culture or in the field. The strains included 60 wild-type strains (30 MBC-resistant and 30 MBC-sensitive), three MBC-resistant site-directed mutants at codon 167 in β2-tubulin, three MBC-sensitive site-directed mutants at codon 240 in β2-tubulin, and their MBC-sensitive wild-type progenitor strain ZF21. The incidence of infected spikelets and the amount of F. graminearum DNA in field grain (AFgDNA) also were evaluated for all strains. MBC resistance increased trichothecene production in shake culture or in the field. Although MBC resistance did not change the incidence of infected spikelets, it did increase AFgDNA. Tri5 gene expression increased in MBC-resistant strains grown in shake culture. We found a significant exponential relationship between trichothecene production and Tri5 gene expression in shake culture and a linear relationship between the incidence of infected spikelets or AFgDNA and trichothecene production in field grain.

© 2009 The American Phytopathological Society