Screening of local Italian maize varieties for resistance to Fusarium verticillioides


In order to find maize genetic sources of resistance to Fusarium attack and to fumonisin accumulation, 27 Italian local varieties collected at the CREA (Consiglio per la ricerca in agricoltura e l’analisi dell’economia agraria, Unità di ricerca per la maiscoltura) maize gene bank, were evaluated in artificial inoculation field experiments during 2011 and 2012 seasons.
Primary ears were inoculated with a mixture of two Fusarium verticillioides toxigenic strains through kernel inocula- tion; non-inoculated and sterile water-inoculated ears were included as controls. Disease severity was estimated by counting the kernels with visible symptoms of infection at the inoculation point. The percentage of internally contaminated kernels was detected and fumonisin accumulation was recorded. Results showed that, under artifi- cial inoculation, genotypes responded differentially to the Fusarium attack. Five out of 27 genotypes (VA56, VA70, VA74, VA114, and VA121) showed a low fumonisin content both in 2011 and 2012, seasons characterized by very different climatic conditions.


maize, local varieties, artificial inoculation; Fusarium verticillioides; resistance

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