In-vitro characterization of the behaviour of Macrophomina phaseolina (Tassi) Goid at the rhizosphere and during early infection of roots of resistant and susceptible varieties of sesame
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There are major gaps in our knowledge of the stages of infection in soil borne pathogens. Soil borne diseases, such as charcoal root rot caused by Macrophomina phaseolina on sesame, have been studied, yet due to the difficulty in observing fungal behaviour in the soil, there has been no detailed study of the infection events. Moreover no study has attempted to compare the infection events in roots of resistant versus susceptible hosts. We present the first ultra-structural report to characterize the behaviour of the fungus in the proximity of the root, the appearance of fungal hyphae on the surface of roots, microsclerotia formation on hyphal strands, early penetration events and subsequent infection processes of M. phaseolina in sesame. We observed distinct differences in fungal behaviour in the rhizosphere and during infection of susceptible and resistant varieties. This study also describes a framework for comparative experiments. The possible reasons for the difference in behaviour of M. phaseolina in the vicinity of and during infection of roots of resistant vs. susceptible varieties of sesame and its implications for disease resistance are discussed.
KeywordsHost pathogen interaction Rhizosphere Fungal behaviour Sesame Macrophomina Infection events Charcoal root rot
We thank Prof. Tapas Dasgupta, Department of Agricultural Science, University of Calcutta, India, for providing the sesame seeds. We used the scanning electron microscope (SEM) facility at the Bose Institute, Kolkata, India. The work was supported by the University Grants Commission (UGC)-NET fellowship and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)-NET fellowship provided to the authors S. Chowdhury and A. Basu respectively.
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