In September 2003, leaves exhibiting spot-type lesions similar to those produced by Cochliobolus sativus Drechs. ex Dastur were widely observed in six commercial barley crops of cvs. Norteña Daymán, Norteña Carumbé, and MUSA 936 in Soriano and Río Negro provinces, the main barley production region in western Uruguay. Spot lesions were tan to dark brown, circular to elliptical, and 3 to 10 mm in diameter. Larger lesions were surrounded by a chlorotic margin of varying width. Affected leaf pieces (10 to 15) from each field were placed in a moist chamber for 2 days to promote sporulation. A fungus identified morphologically as Pyrenophora teres (Died.) Drechs. (1) was consistently isolated from infected leaves. However, symptoms did not correspond to the net-type lesions of net blotch commonly produced by P. teres f. sp. teres in Uruguay. Three monoconidial cultures were obtained by transferring single conidia to potato dextrose agar and then to 10% V8 juice agar and incubated at 20 to 22°C with a 12-h photoperiod for 10 days. Adding sterile water to each plate and gently rubbing the surface with a microscope slide prepared inoculum for pathogenicity tests. Conidia concentration was adjusted to 1 × 104 conidia per ml. Sixty-eight barley genotypes from Uruguay, ICARDA/CIMMYT, and North Dakota were grown in the greenhouse for 2 weeks at 20 to 22°C with a 14-h photoperiod. For each monoconidial isolate, three seedlings of each genotype were inoculated at the three-leaf stage 15 to 16 days after seeding with 0.4 ml of the inoculum suspension with an airbrush inoculator. A drop of Tween 20 was added per 40 ml of inoculum suspension. One set of each genotype was inoculated with sterile water as a control. Seedlings were placed in a dew chamber at 20°C and 100% relative humidity in the dark for 24 h and then returned to prior conditions. The first lesions developed after 7 to 9 days. Leaves two and three of the plants were visually rated for disease (3) 13 days after inoculation. Control plants were disease free. The most susceptible reactions were observed on cvs. Norteña Daymán, MUSA 936, and line CLE 230 (Uruguay). Symptoms were similar in shape and size to those observed in the fields. The most resistant infection types were observed on several Uruguayan and North Dakota advanced lines. The fungus was consistently reisolated from inoculated plants. On the basis of morphology and symptoms produced, the pathogen was identified (2) as P. teres. f. sp. maculata Smedeg. To our knowledge, this is the first report of this fungus causing spot-like symptoms of net blotch in Uruguay.
References: (1) M. B. Ellis. Dematiaceous hyphomycetes, CABI, Oxon, UK, 1971. (2) V. Smedergaard-Petersen. Pages 124--144 in: R. Vet. Agr. Univ. Yearbook, Copenhagen, 1971. (3) A. Tekauz. Can. J. Plant Pathol.7:181, 1985.