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Nonhost Versus Host Resistance to the Grapevine Downy Mildew, Plasmopara viticola, Studied at the Tissue Level

July 2008 , Volume 98 , Number  7
Pages  776 - 780

A. M. Díez-Navajas, S. Wiedemann-Merdinoglu, C. Greif, and D. Merdinoglu

Unité Mixte de Recherche 1131, INRA-ULP Santé de la Vigne et Qualité du Vin, 28 rue de Herrlisheim, F-68021 Colmar cedex, France.

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Accepted for publication 5 March 2008.

Following inoculation of host and nonhost plants with Plasmopara viticola, the grapevine downy mildew, a histological survey was undertaken to identify the stage where its development is contained in nonhosts and in resistant host plants. Three herbaceous nonhost species, Beta vulgaris, Lactuca sativa, and Capsicum annuum, and three grapevine species displaying different level of resistance (Vitis vinifera [susceptible], Vitis riparia [partially resistant] and Muscadinia rotundifolia [totally resistant]) where inoculated by P. viticola using a controlled leaf disk inoculation bioassay. During the early steps of infection, defined as encystment of zoospores on stomata, penetration of the germ tube, and production of the vesicle with the primary hypha, there was no evidence of a clear-cut preference to grapevine tissues that could attest to host specificity. The main difference between host grapevine species and nonhosts was observed during the haustorium formation stage. In nonhost tissues, the infection was stopped by cell wall-associated defense responses before any mature haustorium could appear. Defense responses in resistant grapevines were triggered when haustoria were fully visible and corresponded to hypersensitive responses. These observations illustrate that, for P. viticola, haustorium formation is not only a key stage for the establishment of biotrophy but also for the host specificity and the recognition by grapevine resistance factors.

Additional keywords:biotrophism, cytology, oomycete.

© 2008 The American Phytopathological Society