Myrotoxins Produced by Myrothecium Roridum a Fungus Pathogenic to Tomatoes

  • George A. Bean
  • Bruce B. Jarvis
Part of the Biodeterioration Research book series (BIOR, volume 1)


Trichothecenes are a series of sesquiterpene compounds that have been isolated either as fungal met a bolites or from the Brazilian shrubs Baccharis megapotomica and Baccharis coridifolia. The first trichothecene isolated from fungi was trichothec in from Trichothecium roseum in 1948 (Tamm, 1977), and since then over 80 naturally occurring trichothecenes have been reported (McDougal and Schmuff, 1985). Our interest in trichothecenes started with the report of Kupchan in 1977 that B. megapotomica plants contained relatively high levels of “baccharinoids” which are structurally related to the fungally produced macrocyclic trichothecene roridins differing only by the presence of an extra oxygen in the A ring of baccharinoids (Kupchan et al. , 1977). The presence of trichothecenes or baccharinoids was unusual for two reasons; first, the trichothecenes are phyto toxic yet the Baccharis plants appeared to be normal and secondly, when plants were grown in Maryland from seeds collected in Brazil, the plants did not contain trichothecenes. When B. megapotomica seedling roots were exposed to an aqueous solution containing roridin A, we found that the compound was translocated to the upper part of the plant where it was metabolized to forms identical to the naturally occurring baccharinoids (Jarvis et al. , 1981). Other plant species exposed tororid in A were killed whereas B. megapotomica showed no evidence of phyto toxicity. Based on these studies, we suggested that the source of the trichothecene baccharinoids present in B. megapotomica was probably soil fungi located near the plant. As the fungus grew it released trichothecenes e. g. roridins which were absorbed, translocated and metabolized to baccharinoids in the leaf tissue.


Vinyl Ether Tomato Seedling Antileukemic Activity Tomato Isolate Diseased Tomato 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Bean, G.A., Fernando, T., Jarvis, B.B. and Bruton, B. (1984). The isolation and identification of trichothecene metabolites from a plant pathogenic strain of Myrothecium roridum. J. Nat. Prod. 47, 727–729.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bruton, B.R. (1982). Myrothecium roridum, a potentially devastating pathogen of muskmelons in south Texas. Phytopath. 72, 355.Google Scholar
  3. Ember, L.K. (1984). Yellow rain, Chem. Eng. News Jan. 9., pp. 8–34.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Jarvis, B.B., Lee, Y.-W., Cömezoglis, F.T., Cömezoglis, S.N., and Bean, G.A. (1985a). Myrotoxin: a new class of macrocyclic trichothecenes. Tetrahedron Lett. 26, 4859–4862.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Jarvis, B.B., Midiwo, J.O., Tuthill, D., and Bean, G.A. (1981). Interaction between the antibiotic trichothecenes and the higher plant Baccharis megapotomica. Science 214, 460–462.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Jarvis, B.B., Stahly, G.P., Pavanasasivam, G., De Silva, T., Holmlund, C.E., Mazzola, E.P. and Geoghegan, R.F., Jr. (1982) Isolation and characterization of the trichoverroids and new roridin and verrucarins. J. Org. Chem. 47, 1117–1124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Kupchan, S.M., Streelman, D.R., Jarvis, B.B., Dailey, R.G., Jr. and Sneden, A. (1977). Isolation of potent new antileukemic trichothecenes from Baccharis megapotomica. J. Org. Chem. 42, 4221–4225.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Kuti, J.O., Ng, T. J., and Bean, G.A. (1985). Evidence for a “ pathotoxin” role of trichothecene metabolites produced by as train of Myrothecium roridum pathogenic to muskmelon (Cucumis melo L. ) Phytopath. 75, 1358.Google Scholar
  9. McDougal, P.G., Schmuff, N.R. (1985) Chemnical synthesis of trichothecenes. Fortschr. Chem. Org. Naturst. 47, 153.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Pathre, S.V., and Mirocha, C.J. (1979). Trichothecenes: natural occurrence and potential hazard. J. Am. Oil. Chem. Soc. 56, 820–823.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Schieber, E., and Echandi, E. (1963). Myrothecium stem necrosis and leaf spot, a new disease of coffee in Guatemala. Phytopath. 53, 24–25.Google Scholar
  12. Stevenson, J.A., and McCollock, L.P. (1947). Myrothecium as a tomato rot organism. PI. Dis. Reptr. 31, 147–149.Google Scholar
  13. Tamm, C. (1977). Chemistry and biosynthesis of trichothecenes. In Mycotoxinsin human health, pp. 209–228 (J.V. Rodricks, C.W. Hesseltine and M.A. Mehlman, eds. ) Pathotox, Publ. Park Forest, I L.Google Scholar
  14. Ueno, Y. (1983). Trichotheienes: Chemical, Biological and Toxicological Aspects. Kodansha, Tokyo, Japan, pp. 313.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • George A. Bean
    • 1
  • Bruce B. Jarvis
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of BotanyUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

Personalised recommendations