, Volume 63, Issue 1-2, pp 115-123

Durable resistance to rice blast disease-environmental influences

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Blast is one of the most serious diseases of rice worldwide. The pathogen,Pyricularia grisea, can infect nearly all parts of the shoot and is commonly found on the leaf blade and the panicle neck node. Host resistance is the most desirable means of managing blast, especially in developing countries. Rice cultivars with durable blast resistance have been recognized in several production systems. The durable resistance of these cultivars is associated with polygenic partial resistance that shows no evidence of race specificity. This partial resistance is expressed as fewer and smaller lesions on the leaf blade but latent period does not appear to be an important component. Partial resistance to leaf blast is positively correlated with partial resistance to panicle blast, although some cultivars have been found showing leaf-blast susceptibility and panicle-blast resistance. A diverse set of environmental factors can influence the expression of partial resistance, including temperature, duration of leaf-wetness, nitrogen fertilization, soil type, and water deficit. Because of the great diversity of rice-growing environments, resistance that proves durable in one system may or may not prove useful in another. In highly blast-conducive environments, other means of disease management must be applied to assist host-plant resistance.