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Optimizing conditions of a cell-free toxic filtrate stem cutting assay to evaluate soybean genotype responses to Fusarium species that cause sudden death syndrome

Xiang, Y., Scandiani, M. M., Herman, T. K., Hartman, G. L.
Plant disease 2015 v.99 no.4 pp. 502-507
Fusarium, Glycine max, correlation, culture filtrates, cutting, fungal diseases of plants, genotype, plant pathogenic fungi, root inoculation, soybeans, stems, toxicity, toxicity testing
Cell-free toxic culture filtrates from Fusarium virguliforme, the causal fungus of soybean sudden death syndrome (SDS), cause foliar symptoms on soybean stem cuttings similar to those obtained from root inoculations in whole plants and those observed in production fields. The objectives of this study were to (i) optimize the production conditions for F. virguliforme cell-free toxic culture filtrates and the incubation conditions of the stem cutting assay used to test the toxicity of the cell-free toxic culture filtrates, and (ii) use the optimized assay and a whole plant root inoculation assay to compare four SDS-causing isolates on a panel of selected soybean genotypes. Area under the disease progress curve (AUDPC) values were highest (P = 0.05) when cuttings were immersed in culture filtrate of fungus grown in soybean dextrose broth, in filtrate produced from the fungus grown for 18 or 22 days, and when stem cuttings were incubated at 30°C. AUDPC values and shoot dry weights from the whole plant root inoculations and the AUDPC values from the stem cutting assay differed (P < 0.05) among nine soybean genotypes tested with F. virguliforme and F. tucumaniae isolates, and the AUDPC values from the two assays were positively correlated (r = 0.44 at P < 0.0001).