Short communication: Local infection of opium poppy leaves by Peronospora somniferi sporangia can give rise to systemic infections and seed infection in resistant cultivars

Miguel Montes-Borrego, Francisco J. Muñoz-Ledesma, Rafael M. Jiménez-Díaz, Blanca B. Landa

Abstract


Downy mildew (DM) of opium poppy (Papaver somniferum) caused by Peronospora somniferi is one of the most destructive diseases of this crop due to the systemic nature of infection as compared with local infections caused by Peronospora meconopsidis, the other downy mildew pathogen of this crop. We developed an inoculation method using Peronospora somniferi sporangia as inoculum and demonstrated for the first time that local infection of leaves by sporangia give rise to systemic infections in the plant as well as of seeds. Our results also showed that this inoculation protocol was very effective in reproducing disease symptoms and assessing the resistance response to DM in opium poppy genotypes under field conditions. More interestingly, results indicate that up to 100% of seed samples from some genotypes showing a complete (symptomless) resistant phenotype were infected by the pathogen when seeds were analyzed by a P. somniferi-specific nested-PCR protocol. This latter aspect deserves further attention while breeding opium poppy for resistance to P. somniferi.

Keywords


Peronospora meconopsidis; disease resistance screening; downy mildew; inoculum source; seed transmission

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References


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DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2017153-10864