The in vitro physiological phenotype of tomato resistance to Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici
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With the aim of dissecting host-parasite interaction processes in the system Lycopersicon aesculentum-Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici we have isolated plant cell mutants having single-step alterations in their defense response. A previous analysis of the physiological phenotypes of mutant cell clones suggested that recognition is the crucial event for active defence, and that polysaccharide content, fungal growth inhibition, peroxidase induction in in vitro dual culture and ion leakage induced by cultural filtrates of the pathogen can be markers of resistance. In this paper we present the results of a similar analysis carried out on cell cultures from one susceptible (‘Red River’), one tolerant (‘UC 105’) and three resistant (‘Davis UC 82’, ‘Heinz’, ‘UC 90’) tomato cultivars. Our data confirm that the differences in the parameters considered are correlated with resistance versus susceptibility in vivo. Therefore, these parameters can be used for early screening in selection programmes. These data, together with those obtained on isolated cell mutants, suggest that the selection in vitro for altered fungal recognition and/or polysaccharide or callose content may lead to in vivo — resistant genotypes. The data are thoroughly discussed with particular attention paid to the importance of polysaccharides in active defense initiation.
Key wordsRecognition Resistance In vitro selection Tomato Fusarium
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