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Aerial contamination of sugarcane in Guadeloupe by two strains of Xanthomonas albilineans

Daugrois J.H., Dumont V., Champoiseau P., Costet L., Boisne-Noc R., Rott P.. 2003. European Journal of Plant Pathology, 109 : p. 445-458.

DOI: 10.1023/A:1024259606468

Two sugarcane plots were set up in Guadeloupe with disease-free tissue cultured plants in a banana growing location distant from sugarcane fields. Thirteen weeks after planting sugarcane in the field, a Xanthomonas albilineans strain belonging to serotype 3 (strain XaS3) was detected in water sampled at sunrise on the leaves in the first plot. This strain randomly invaded the sugarcane canopy. Seven weeks later, a new strain belonging to serotype 1 (strain XaS1) appeared on leaves and populations of strain XaS1 progressively increased on the leaf surface, whereas populations of strain XaS3 progressively decreased. Leaf scald symptoms were first noted 26 weeks after sugarcane planting. However, only strain XaS1 was isolated from leaves and a few sugarcane stalks showing symptoms. Both strains also colonized the second field plot, which was studied at the end of the experiment to avoid human interference of aerial contamination of sugarcane. After inoculation of three sugarcane cultivars by the decapitation technique, strain XaS1 was as virulent or more virulent than five other strains of X. albilineans isolated from diseased sugarcane plants in Guadeloupe. Although strain XaS3 colonized a few stalks, it failed to produce any symptoms and was the least virulent strain. Leaf surface colonization by X. albilineans was reproduced in a greenhouse trial by spraying the pathogen on sugarcane foliage. After 8 weeks, the pathogen was isolated from disinfected leaf blades. Although the leaf scald pathogen is thought to be mainly transmitted by infected cuttings, aerial transmission of X. albilineans is also known to occur. These results indicate the importance of sugarcane phyllosphere colonization by virulent strains in the epidemiological cycle of leaf scald disease in Guadeloupe.

Mots-clés : saccharum; xanthomonas albilineans; Épidémiologie; pouvoir pathogène; contamination; feuille; guadeloupe; france

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