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Phytopathology. 1998 Nov;88(11):1210-7. doi: 10.1094/PHYTO.1998.88.11.1210.

Conidia as a Substrate for Internal Transcribed Spacer-Based PCR Identification of Members of the Leptosphaeria maculans Species Complex.


ABSTRACT The blackleg disease of oilseed rape is caused by an ascomycete species complex termed Leptosphaeria maculans (anamorph Phoma lingam). L. maculans isolates collected worldwide were gathered in the International Blackleg of Crucifers Network (IBCN) collection. Representative IBCN isolates, along with one P. nigrificans isolate, were further analyzed using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region. ITS size polymorphism discriminated three groups: (i) P. nigrificans, (ii) Tox(+) and 'Lepidium' isolates, and (iii) NA1, NA2, NA3, 'Thlaspi', and 'Erysimum' isolates. Digestion of the ITS region with 19 selected endonucleases showed restriction site polymorphism between the different subgroups: digestion with RsaI could discriminate Tox(+) from 'Lepidium' isolates, whereas digestion with four enzymes, i.e., HaeIII, EcoRII, RsaI, and AluI, was needed to discriminate between NA1, NA2, NA3, 'Thlaspi', and 'Erysimum' isolates. No restriction site polymorphism was observed between isolates within the 'Thlaspi', Tox(+), NA1, and NA2 subgroups. Direct amplification of the ITS region could be achieved using intact conidia, collected either in axenic cultures or on leaf lesions, with only a 4-min 95 degrees C denaturation step prior to PCR reaction. A routine identification protocol requiring no DNA extraction and a sequential use of a few restriction enzymes following PCR has been used successfully for large-scale identification of French field isolates.

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