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New Avirulence Genes in the Phytopathogenic Fungus Leptosphaeria maculans

October 2002 , Volume 92 , Number  10
Pages  1,122 - 1,133

M. H. Balesdent , A. Attard , M. L. Kühn , and T. Rouxel

Pathologie Végétale, INRA, Route de Saint Cyr, 78026 Versailles Cedex, France

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Accepted for publication 31 May 2002.

Leptosphaeria maculans, the causal agent of stem canker of oilseed rape (Brassica napus), develops gene-for-gene interactions with oilseed rape, and four L. maculans avirulence (AVR) genes (AvrLm1, AvrLm2, AvrLm4, and alm1) were previously genetically characterized. Based on the analysis of progeny of numerous in vitro crosses between L. maculans isolates showing either already characterized or new differential interactions, this work aims to provide an overview of the AVR genes that may specify incompatibility toward B. napus and the related species B. juncea and B. rapa. Two novel differential interactions were thus identified between L. maculans and B. napus genotypes, one of them corresponding to a complete resistance to European races of L. maculans. In both cases, a single gene control of avirulence was established (genes AvrLm3 and AvrLm7). Similarly, a single gene control of avirulence toward a B. rapa genotype, also resistant to European L. maculans isolates, was demonstrated (gene AvrLm8). Finally, a digenic control of avirulence toward B. juncea was established (genes AvrLm5 and AvrLm6). Linkage analyses demonstrated that at least four unlinked L. maculans genomic regions, including at least one AVR gene cluster (AvrLm1-AvrLm2-AvrLm6), are involved in host specificity. The AvrLm3-AvrLm4-AvrLm7 region may correspond either to a second AVR gene cluster or to a multiallelic AVR gene.

Additional keywords: blackleg disease, Phoma lingam.

© 2002 The American Phytopathological Society