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Variability in Virulence Among Asexual Progenies of Phytophthora infestans

March 2003 , Volume 93 , Number  3
Pages  293 - 304

F. M. Abu-El Samen , G. A. Secor , and N. C. Gudmestad

Department of Plant Pathology, North Dakota State University, Fargo 58105

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Accepted for publication 1 October 2002.

One hundred two single zoospore isolates of Phytophthora infestans, derived asexually from four parental isolates of US-8 genotype and one isolate of US-1 genotype, were characterized for their virulence phenotypes to determine changes in virulence during asexual reproduction. Potato differentials, each containing a major gene for resistance to P. infestans (R1 to R11), were used to characterize the virulence patterns. Isolates were also characterized for mating type, glucose-6-phosphate isomerase (Gpi) banding pattern, and DNA fingerprints using probe RG57 to determine any genotypic changes in the single zoospore isolates. A subset of these single zoospore isolates was tested for response to mefenoxam to determine any shifts in sensitivity. Results showed that single zoospore isolates derived from parent PI-1 (US-8, 11 isolates) were identical to their parental virulence. Isolates derived from parent PI-191 (US-8, 29 isolates) showed some differences in virulence, mainly toward R8 and R9. Isolates derived from parent PI-126 (US-8, 14 isolates) demonstrated a higher level of virulence diversity. Isolates derived from parents PI-52 (US-1, 28 isolates) and PI-105 (US-8, 20 isolates) showed the highest level of virulence variability among the single zoospore isolates. Mating type, Gpi banding pattern, and DNA fingerprints for the single zoospore isolates were, in most cases, identical to the parental isolates. Single zoospore isolates showed different levels of sensitivity to mefenoxam. Virulence and other genetic changes during asexual reproduction are likely to play a major role in changing the race structure of P. infestans populations. This continuous change in the race structure is a serious problem and now poses a new challenge for utilization of race-specific resistance to manage late blight of potato.

Additional keywords: phenylamide fungicides, Solanum tuberosum.

© 2003 The American Phytopathological Society