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Fungal Biol. 2011 Jul;115(7):649-59. doi: 10.1016/j.funbio.2011.03.009. Epub 2011 Apr 23.

Absence of isolation by distance patterns at the regional scale in the fungal plant pathogen Leptosphaeria maculans.

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  • 1INRA, AgroCampus Ouest, UMR1099 BiO3P, 35653 Le Rheu, France. rtravadon@ucdavis.edu

Abstract

Outcomes of host-pathogen coevolution are influenced by migration rates of the interacting species. Reduced gene flow with increasing spatial distance between populations leads to spatial genetic structure, as predicted by the isolation by distance (IBD) model. In wind-dispersed plant-pathogenic fungi, a significant spatial genetic structure is theoretically expected if local spore dispersal is more frequent than long-distance dispersal, but this remains to be documented by empirical data. For 29 populations of the oilseed rape fungus Leptosphaeria maculans sampled from two French regions, genetic structure was determined using eight minisatellite markers. Gene diversity (H = 0.62-0.70) and haplotypic richness (R = 0.96-1) were high in all populations. No linkage disequilibrium was detected between loci, suggesting the prevalence of panmictic sexual reproduction. Analysis of molecular variance showed that > 97% of genetic diversity was observed within populations. Genetic differentiation was low among populations (F(st) < 0.05). Although direct methods previously revealed short-distance dispersal for L. maculans, our findings of no correlation between genetic and geographic distances among populations illustrate that the IBD model does not account for dispersal of the fungus at the spatial scale we examined. These results indicate high gene flow among French populations of L. maculans, suggesting high dispersal rates and/or large effective population sizes, two characteristics giving the pathogen high evolutionary potential against the deployment of resistant oilseed rape cultivars.

Copyright © 2011 The British Mycological Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
21724171
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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