Nivalenol-type populations of Fusarium graminearum and F. asiaticum are prevalent on wheat in southern Louisiana

Liane Rosewich Gale, Stephen A. Harrison, Todd J. Ward, Kerry O'Donnell, Eugene A. Milus, Samuel W. Gale, H. Corby Kistler

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143 Scopus citations


U.S. populations of the Fusarium graminearum clade cause head blight on wheat and barley and usually contaminate grain with the trichothecene mycotoxin deoxynivalenol (DON). Recently, however, individual nivalenol (NIV)-type isolates from the United States were described that belonged to either the newly described species F. gerlachii or the genetically distinct Gulf Coast population of F. graminearum sensu stricto (s.s.). Here, we describe the discovery of NIV-type F. graminearum s.s. populations that were found in high proportion (79%) among isolates from small-grain-growing regions of Louisiana. We genotyped 237 isolates from Louisiana with newly developed polymerase chain reaction (PCR) restriction fragment length polymorphism markers and multiplex PCR primers that distinguish among the three trichothecene types: the two DON types (15ADON and 3ADON) and NIV. These isolates were compared with 297 isolates from 11 other U.S. states, predominantly from the Midwest. Using Bayesian-model-based clustering, we discovered a southern Louisiana population of F. g r a m in e a r u m s.s. that was genetically distinct from the previously recognized pathogen population in the Midwest (MW15ADON population). Population membership was correlated with trichothecene type. Most isolates from the southern Louisiana population were of the NIV type, while the majority of the isolates from the Midwest were of the 15ADON type. A smaller proportion of isolates from Louisiana belonged to the previously described Gulf Coast population that was mostly of the 3ADON type. The NIV type was also identified in collections from Arkansas (12%), North Carolina (40%), and Missouri (2%), with the collections from Arkansas and North Carolina being small and unrepresentative. F. asiaticum was detected from the two southern Louisiana parishes Acadia and Alexandria. All identified 41 F. asiaticum isolates were of the NIV type. Greenhouse tests indicated that U.S. NIV types accumulated four times less trichothecene toxin than DON types on inoculated wheat. This is the first report of NIV-type populations of F. graminearum s. s. and F. asiaticum in the United States.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)124-134
Number of pages11
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2011


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