Melon represents the most widespread cucurbit in Italy. In recent years melon has been subjected to significant losses in yield and quality due to an increasing number of soil-borne fungal diseases. The collapse of melon, caused by a complex of fungal pathogens, including Monosporascus cannonballus, Acremonium cucurbitacearum, Plectosporium tabacinum and Rhizopycnis vagum, represents one of most destructive diseases worldwide. The purpose of this study was to determine the occurrence of collapse throughout melon-producing areas in Italy in recent years, to verify the identification of isolates collected, and to test their pathogenicity on melon and other cucurbits. Several fungi were isolated from symptomatic roots of melons in the Italian production areas. The identification was supported by PCR with a species-specific primer and DNA sequence data. RFLP and sequence analyses showed the existence of a substantial homogeneity among Italian M. cannonballus isolates. Given the self-incompatibility of these isolates it is impossible to ascertain vegetative compatibility groups (VGC) and consequently genetic relatedness cannot be studied. The frequency of isolation of fungal species varied with geographic locations, M. cannonballus being present mainly in Central Italy, while A. cucurbitacearum and P. tabacinum were most common in Apulia. In pathogenicity tests under greenhouse conditions M. cannonballus, A. cucurbitacearum and P. tabacinum caused collapse symptoms and root rots, whereas R. vagum was found to be a weak pathogen.
|Titolo:||Fungi associated with root rot and collapse of melon in Italy|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2008|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|