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Molecular Characterization, Fitness, and Mycotoxin Production of Fusarium asiaticum Strains Resistant to Fludioxonil

Qiu, J. B., Yu, M. Z., Yin, Q., Xu, J. H., Shi, J. R.
Plant disease 2018 v.102 no.9 pp. 1759-1765
Fusarium asiaticum, Fusarium head blight, amino acid substitution, conidia, fludioxonil, fungi, fungicide resistance, genes, glycerol, histidine kinase, liquids, median effective concentration, mutants, mycelium, pathogenicity, pathogens, rice, seed-borne diseases, sequence analysis, signal transduction, spikelets, trichothecenes, wheat, China
Fludioxonil is used in seedborne disease management of various fungal pathogens, including Fusarium asiaticum, the predominant causal agent of Fusarium head blight in China. In this study, we screened resistant strains from a large number of F. asiaticum strains collected from 2012 to 2016 and found that 4 of 1,000 field strains were highly resistant to fludioxonil. The 50% effective concentration values of the resistant strains and induced mutants ranged from 80 to >400 μg/ml. Compared with field-sensitive strains, all field-collected and laboratory-induced resistant strains exhibited fitness defects in traits including mycelial growth, conidial production, pathogenicity, and sensitivity to osmotic conditions. In the presence of fludioxonil, significantly higher glycerol accumulation was found in sensitive strains but not in resistant individuals. The fludioxonil-resistant strains produced lower amounts of glycerol in liquid culture and lower amounts of trichothecene mycotoxins in rice culture and inoculated wheat spikelets than the fludioxonil-sensitive strains. Sequence analyses of the key genes of the two-component histidine kinase signaling pathway showed various amino acid substitutions in the Os1, Os4, and Os5 genes between field-sensitive and resistant strains or mutants. The results of this study suggest a potential risk of fludioxonil resistance development and a possible influence of resistance mutations on fitness parameters and toxin production in F. asiaticum.