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Morphological and molecular identification of pathogenic Fusarium spp. on strawberry in Iran

Najmeh Ayoubi & Mohammad Javad Soleimani

Sydowia 68: 163–171

Published online on May 31st, 2016

Strawberry is one of the most important berry crops in Kurdistan province, which is the largest strawberry growing district in Iran. The strawberry root and fruit rots are most devastating diseases in the region. Among common fungal pathogens, Fusarium species causing mainly root/crown rot poses a major impact worldwide. Identification of Fusarium species is important for disease control. To identify Fusarium species attacking strawberries, a total of 93 Fusarium isolates were recovered from strawberries collected from four different geographical regions, mainly from Sanandej, Kurdistan; Iran. Fusarium isolates were identified based on morphology and on partial DNA sequencing of the translation elongation factor-1α (tef) and β-tubulin (TUB) genes.
The majority (35.5 %) of these isolates were identified as F. oxysporum f. sp. fragariae, whereas almost 20 % of the isolates were belong to F. solani species. Sixteen percent of the isolates were close to Fusarium incarnatum-equiseti species complex, although further investigation is needed to confirm whether they represent a yet undescribed species. The remaining isolates were identified as F. acuminatum and F. equiseti with 16 and 13 % of frequencies, respectively. Representative isolates of the five Fusarium spp. were evaluated for their pathogenicity on healthy strawberry runners and fruits in the glasshouse and in the plastic container, respectively. This is the first report of F. solani, F. acuminatum, F. incarnatum-equiseti complex and F. equiseti attacking strawberry in Iran.

Keywords: β-tubulin, Fusarium, Phylogeny, Taxonomy, tef1.

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