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Impacts of plant growth and architecture on pathogen processes and their consequences for epidemic behaviour

Calonnec, A., Burie, J-B., Langlais, M., Guyader, S., Saint-Jean, S., Sache, I., Tivoli, B.
European journal of plant pathology 2013 v.135 no.3 pp. 479-497
crop management, crops, host plants, microclimate, models, pathogens, plant growth, porosity, spore dispersal
As any epidemic on plants is driven by the amount of susceptible tissue, and the distance between organs, any modification in the host population, whether quantitative or qualitative, can have an impact on the epidemic dynamics. In this paper we examine using examples described in the literature, the features of the host plant and the use of crop management which are likely to decrease diseases. We list the pathogen processes that can be affected by crop growth and architecture modifications and then determine how we can highlight the principal ones. In most cases, a reduction in plant growth combined with an increase in plant or crop porosity reduces infection efficiency and spore dispersal. Experimental approaches in semi-controlled conditions, with concomitant characterisation of the host, microclimate and disease, allow a better understanding and analysis of the processes impacted. Afterwards, the models able to measure and predict the effect of plant growth and architecture on epidemic behaviour are reviewed.