U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.


Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.


Main content area

Evaluation of sorghum germplasm used in US breeding programmes for sources of sugary disease resistance

Dahlberg, J.A., Bandyopadhyay, R., Rooney, W.L., Odvody, G.N., Madera-Torres, P.
Plant pathology 2001 v.50 no.6 pp. 681-689
germplasm, planting date, plant breeding, genetic resistance, fungal diseases of plants, flowers, Claviceps, plant genetic resources, disease resistance, genotype, Sorghum bicolor, pedigree, United States
Ergot or sugary disease (caused by Claviceps africana) of sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) has become an important constraint in North and South American countries that rely on F1 hybrid seeds for high productivity. The objective of this research was to determine the vulnerability of various germplasm sources and publicly bred sorghum lines to sugary disease in the United States. Flower characteristics associated with sugary disease resistance were also studied. A-/B-line pairs, R-lines, putative sources of resistance and their hybrid combinations with an A3 cytoplasmic male-sterile source were evaluated using a disease incidence, severity and dual-ranking system. Trials were planted in a randomized complete block design with three replications and repeated in at least two planting dates. Planting dates and pedigrees had significant effects on overall ranking for resistance. A-lines were most susceptible to sugary disease. R-lines were more susceptible than B-lines with respect to incidence and severity of the disease. Newer releases of A- and B-lines were more susceptible to sugary disease than older releases. Sugary disease reaction of A-lines was a good indicator of disease reaction of B-lines. Tx2737, a popular R-line, was highly susceptible to sugary disease in spite of being a good pollen shedder because the stigma emerged from glumes 2-3 days before anthesis. The combination of flower characteristics associated with resistance were least exposure time of stigma to inoculum before pollination, rapid stigma drying after pollination, and small stigma. An Ethiopian male-fertile germplasm accession, IS 8525, had good levels of resistance. Its A3 male-sterile hybrid had the highest level of resistance in the male-sterile background. IS 8525 should be exploited in host-plant resistance strategies.