César E. Falconí, Agropecuarian Science Faculty, Life Science Department, Army Polytechnic School, Sangolqui, Ecuador; and
Richard G. F. Visser and
Adriaan W. van Heusden, Wageningen UR Plant Breeding, Wageningen, The Netherlands
Anthracnose is a serious problem of both Andean lupine and tamarillo in Ecuador. Morphological features, internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequences, and host specificity were used to characterize Colletotrichum isolates from lupine and tamarillo. Based on phenotypic and molecular characterization, the causal agent of anthracnose on both hosts was Colletotrichum acutatum. All isolates were identified in a C. acutatum-specific polymerase chain reaction assay. Colony diameter, conidia shape, and insensitivity to benomyl also placed isolates from both hosts in the C. acutatum group. However, a detailed analysis of the ITS sequences placed the lupine and tamarillo isolates from the Ecuadorian Andean zone in two clades, with both lupine and tamarillo isolates in each clade. C. acutatum isolates from Andean lupine were distinct from other C. acutatum isolates on lupine around the world. In cross-infection studies, the diameter of lesions produced by isolates from each host was compared on the main stem of two tamarillo and three lupine cultivars. Some isolates produced larger lesions on the host from which they were isolated but others showed similar aggressiveness on their alternate host. Isolates from both hosts were biotrophic on lupine stems, producing little necrosis and abundant sporulation whereas, on tamarillo stems, they produced dark lesions with few conidia. The collection of C. acutatum isolates from lupine and tamarillo provides interesting material for the study quantitative host adaptation.