U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service, 1301 Ditto Ave., Fort Detrick, MD 21702.
Temperature is a critical factor in plant disease development. As part of a research program to determine how specific environmental variables affect soybean rust, we determined temperature effects on urediniospore germination and germ tube growth of four isolates of Phakopsora pachyrhizi, one each from Brazil, Hawaii, Taiwan, and Zimbabwe, and an isolate of P. meibomiae from Puerto Rico, collected over a 25-year period. Also compared were the effects of temperature during a night dew period on initiation of disease by the P. pachyrhizi isolates. All variables were fit to a nonlinear beta function with temperature as the independent variable. Minimum, maximum, and optimum temperatures, along with shape parameters of the beta function for each variable, were statistically analyzed. All Phakopsora isolates behaved similarly as to how temperature affected urediniospore germination, germ tube growth, and initiation of disease. The results suggest that P. pachyrhizi has changed little in the past few decades with respect to how it responds to temperature and that previously collected research data continues to be valid, simplifying the development of soybean rust disease models.