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Fungal Genet Biol. 2002 Jul;36(2):128-36.

Distribution of mating type alleles in the wheat pathogen Mycosphaerella graminicola over spatial scales from lesions to continents.

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ETH Zentrum/LFW, Phytopathology Group, Institute of Plant Sciences, Universit├Ątstrasse 2, Z├╝rich, CH-8092, Switzerland.


A total of 2035 Mycosphaerella graminicola strains collected from 16 geographic locations on four continents were assayed for the mating type locus. RFLP fingerprints were used to identify clones in each population. At the smallest spatial scale analyzed, both mating types were found among fungal strains sampled from different lesions of the same leaf as well as from different pycnidia in the same lesion. At larger spatial scales, the two mating types were found at equal frequencies across spatial scales ranging from several square meters to several thousand square kilometers. Though the absolute frequencies of the two mating types sometimes varied for different sampling units within the same spatial scale in the hierarchy (plots within a field, fields within a country, or different continents of the world), none of the differences were statistically significant from the null hypothesis of equal frequencies for the two mating types. The evolutionary forces likely to maintain the even distribution of the two mating types in this pathogen were discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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