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Interactions between Trichoderma harzianum and defoliating Verticillium dahliae in resistant and susceptible wild olive clones

Carrero‐Carrón, I., Rubio, M. B., Niño‐Sánchez, J., Navas‐Cortés, J. A., Jiménez‐Díaz, R. M., Monte, E., Hermosa, R.
Plant pathology 2018 v.67 no.8 pp. 1758-1767
Trichoderma harzianum, Verticillium dahliae, Verticillium wilt, biological control, clones, confocal microscopy, cultivars, disease control, endophytes, fluorescence, fungi, olives, pathogens, pathotypes, roots, rootstocks, stems, virulence
Verticillium wilt (VW) in olive is best managed by an integrated disease management strategy, of which use of host resistance is a key element. The widespread occurrence of a highly virulent defoliating (D) Verticillium dahliae pathotype has jeopardized the use of commercial olive cultivars lacking sufficient resistance to this pathogen. However, the combined use of resistant wild olive rootstocks and Trichoderma spp. effective in the biocontrol of VW can improve the management of VW in olive. In vivo interactions between D V. dahliae and Trichoderma harzianum were studied in olive and wild olive plants displaying different degrees of resistance against this pathogen using confocal microscopy. This multitrophic system included wild olive clones Ac‐4 and Ac‐15, olive cv. Picual, and the fungal fluorescent transformants T. harzianum GFP22 and V. dahliae V138I‐YFP, the latter being obtained in this study. In planta observations indicated that V138I‐YFP colonizes the roots and stems of the olive and wild olive genotypes, and that GFP22 grows endophytically within the roots of them all. YFP fluorescence signal quantifications showed that: (i) the degree of root and stem colonization by the pathogen varied depending upon the susceptibility of the tested wild olive genotype, being higher in Ac‐15 than in Ac‐4 plants; and (ii) treatment with T. harzianum GFP22 reduced the extent of pathogen growth in both clones. Moreover, root colonization by strain GFP22 reduced the percentage of pathogen colonies recovered from stems of olive and wild olive plants.