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The effect of salinity on the survival, growth, sporulation and infection of Phytophthora ramorum

Jason A. Preuett, Daniel J. Collins, Douglas G. Luster, Timothy L. Widmer
Fungal ecology 2016 v.23 pp. 123-130
Phytophthora ramorum, Rhododendron, correlation, host-pathogen relationships, leaves, microbial growth, pathogen survival, pathogenicity, salinity, salt concentration, salt tolerance, sand, sporangia, sporulation, surveys, water quality, water treatment, waterways, zoospores
Phytophthora ramorum has been found in waterways outside infested nurseries, but little is known about its behavior in water. This study examined the effect of salinity on survival, growth, sporulation, and infection. P. ramorum survival and growth was negatively correlated with salt concentration (range of 0–45 g l−1), but showed a level of tolerance even at 45 g l−1. No sporangia were observed in cultures with higher than 20 g l−1 of salt and zoospores were not released from sporangia above 14 g l−1. Water sources with different salinity were used to understand the environment where P. ramorum can survive and infect host material. Water from natural bodies and water amended with different salt concentrations were added to P. ramorum-infested sand and baited with rhododendron leaf disks. Infection decreased with increasing salt concentration and increased with higher initial concentration of P. ramorum. This research helps to better understand the effects of water quality on survival and infectivity of P. ramorum, expanding the potential survey range.