, Volume 48, Issue 6, pp 726-729

Production of indole-3-acetic acid by mutant strains of Ustilago maydis (maize smut / huitlacoche)

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Production of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) by four strains of the maize pathogen Ustilago maydis was analyzed. The fungus induces gall formation on its host plant and IAA production by  U. maydis may be required as a pathogenicity or virulence factor. The study included the FB2 wild-type strain and the 103, 130FZ and 130FT mutants. Results show that treatment with clofibric acid, alone or in combination with UV light, can be used to obtain  U. maydis strains with defective IAA production in vitro, as quantified with the Salkowski reagent and by HPLC. The strain with the lowest production was 130FT, and its peak IAA level represented only 16% of the highest value obtained for the FB2 wild-type strain (124 μg/ml).

Received: 11 April 1996 / Received last revision: 5 September 1997 / Accepted: 11 September 1997