Article | 06. 2015 Vol. 33, Issue. 3
Development of an Efficient Method of Screening for Watermelon Plants Resistant to Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum

Research Center for Biobased Chemistry, Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology1
Division of Applied Bioscience and Biotechnology, Institute of Environmentally-Friendly Agriculture, Chonnam National University2

2015.06. 409:419


This study was conducted to establish an efficient screening method for watermelon plants resistant to Fusarium wilt (FW), which is caused by Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum (Fon). An HA isolate was prepared from a wilted watermelon plant in Haman-gun and identified as F. oxysporum f. sp. niveum based on morphological characteristics, molecular analyses of ITS (internal transcribed spacer) and TEF (translation elongation factor 1α) sequences, and host specificity on cucurbits including watermelon, melon, oriental melon, and cucumber. The assay for disease response of watermelon differentials indicated that the HA isolate was race 0. Among seven liquid media tested, the highest amount of Fon spores was produced from V8-juice broth, which was selected as a medium for mass production of Fon. The disease assay for 21 watermelon and 11 watermelon-rootstock cultivars demonstrated that 20 watermelon cultivars except for ‘Soknoranggul’ were susceptible; ‘Soknoranggul’ was moderately resistant. All the tested rootstock cultivars were highly resistant to the HA isolate. The evaluation of disease development depending on various conditions suggested that an efficient screening method for FW resistance in watermelon plants is to dip the roots of 10-day-old seedlings in spore suspension of 1.0 × 105 - 1.0 × 106 conidia・mL-1 for 30 min., to transplant the seedlings to plastic pots with a fertilized soil, and then to cultivate the plants at 25°C for 3 weeks.

1. Agrios, G.N. 2005. Genetics of plant disease, p. 163-164. In: Plant pathology. 5th ed. Elsevier Academic Press, Burlington, USA.  

2. Chun, J. 1995. Computer-assisted classification and identification of Actinomycetes. PhD Diss., Newcastle Univ., Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.  

3. Cirulli, M. 1972. Variation of pathogenicity in Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum and resistance in watermelon cultivars, p. 491-500. In: Actas III Congr. Un. Fitopatol. Mediterr. Oeiras.   

4. Crall, J.M. 1963. Physiologic specialization in Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum. Phytopathology 53:873.  

5. Elmstrom, G.W. and D.L. Hopkins. 1981. Resistance of watermelon cultivars to Fusarium wilt. Plant Dis. 65:825-827.  

6. Felsenstein, J. 1985. Confidence limits on phylogenies: an approach using the bootstrap. Evolution 39:783-791.  

7. Geiser, D.M., M. Jiménez-Gasco, S. Kang, I. Makalowska, N. Veeraraghavan, T.J. Ward, N. Zhang, G.A. Kuldau, and K. O'Donnell. 2004. FUSARIUM-ID v. 1.0: A DNA sequence database for identifying Fusarium. Eur. J. Plant Pathol. 110: 473-479.   

8. Homa, M., C.S. Shobana, Y.R.B. Singh, P. Manikandan, K.P. Selvam, L. Kredics, V. Narendran, C. Vάgvӧlogy, and L. Galgόczy. 2013. Fusarium keratitis in South India: causative agents, their antifungal susceptibilities and a rapid identification method for the Fusarium solani species complex. Mycoses 56:501-511.  

9. Kwon, Y.S., Y.H. Om, and H.T. Kim. 1998. Identification and distribution of races of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum on watermelon in Korea. Cucurbit Genet. Coop. Rpt. 21:33-36.   

10. Lee, D.H. 1969. Studies on the control of Fusarium wilt of the cucurbitaceous plants - (1) Investigation on the pathogenicity of Fusarium isolates from the wilted cucurbitaceous plants. Kor. J. Appl. Entomol. 7:69-75.   

11. Leslie, J.F. and B.A. Summerell. 2006. Species description, p. 109. In: The Fusarium laboratory manual. Blackwell Publishing, Ames, USA.  

12. Martyn, R.D. 1987. Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum race 2: a highly aggressive race new to the United States. Plant Dis. 71:233-236.  

13. Martyn, R.D. 1991. Resistance to races 0, 1, and 2 of Fusarium wilt of watermelon in Citrullus sp. PI-296341-FR. Hortic. Sci. 26:429-432.  

14. Martyn, R.D. 1996. Fusarium wilt of watermelon, p. 11-16. In: T.A. Zitter, D.L. Hopkins, and C.E. Thomas (eds.). Compendium of cucurbit diseases. American Phytopathological Society Press, St. Paul, MN, USA.  

15. Martyn, R.D and B.D. Bruton. 1989. An initial survey of the United States for races of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum. HortScience 24:696-698.  

16. Martyn, R.D. and R.J. McLaughlin. 1983. Effects of inoculum concentration on the apparent resistance of watermelons to Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum. Plant Dis. 67:493-495.  

17. Nelson, P.E., T.A. Toussoun, and W.F.O. Marasas. 1983. Fusarium species: An illustrated manual for identification. Penn. State Univ. Press, University Park.  

18. Netzer, D. and I. Dishon. 1973. Screening for resistance and physiological specialization of Fusarium oxysporum in watermelon and muskmelon. (Abstr. 941) Second Int. Congr. Plant Pathol., Minneapolis, MN.  

19. Netzer, D. 1976. Physiological races and soil population level of Fusarium wilt of watermelon. Phytoparasitica 4:131-136.  

20. Netzer, D. and C. Weintall. 1980. Inheritance of resistance in watermelon to race 1 of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum. Plant Dis. 64:853-854.  

21. O’Donnell, K.O., E. Cigelnik, and H.H. Casper. 1998. Molecular phylogenetic, morphological, and mycotoxin data support reidentification of the Quorn mycoprotein fungus as Fusarium venenatum. Fungal Genet. Biol. 23:57-67.  

22. Scott, J.C., T.R. Gordon, D.V. Shaw, and S.T. Koike. 2010. Effect of temperature on severity of Fusarium wilt of lettuce caused by Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. lactucae. Plant Dis. 94:13-17.  

23. Thompson, J.D., D.G. Higgins, and T.J. Gibson. 1994. CLUSTAL W: improving the sensitivity of progressive multiple sequence alignment through sequence weighting, position-specific gap penalties and weight matrix choice. Nucleic Acids Res. 22: 4673-4680.  

24. Van Poucke, K., S. Monbaliu, F. Munaut, K. Heungens, S. De Saeger, and F. Van Hove. 2012. Genetic diversity and mycotoxin production of Fusarium lactis species complex isolates from sweet pepper. Intl. J. Food Microbiol. 153:28-37.  

25. Wagacha, J.M., U. Steiner, H.W. Dehne, S. Zuehlke, M. Spiteller, J. Muthomi, and E.C. Oerke. 2010. Diversity in mycotoxins and fungal species infecting wheat in Nakuru District, Kenya. J. Phytopathol. 158:527-535.   

26. White, T.J., T. Bruns, S. Lee, and J. Taylor. 1990. Amplification and direct sequencing of fungal ribosomal RNA genes for phylogenetics, p. 315-322. In: M.A. Innis, D.H. Gelfand, J.J. Sninsky, and T.J. White (eds.). PCR protocols: A guide to methods and applications. Academic Press, San Diego.  

27. Zhang, L.X., J.H. Song, J.T. Shen, G.J. Tan, S.S. Li, and F. Ding. 2013. First report of stem canker on phoenix tree (Firmiana simplex) caused by Fusarium oxysporum in China. J. Phytopathol. 161:128-130.  

28. Zhang, X.P. and Rhodes, B.B. 1993. Inheritance of resistance to races 0, 1, and 2 Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum in watermelon. Cucurbit Genet. Coop. Rpt. 16:77-78.  

29. Zhou, X.G., K.L. Everts, and B.D. Bruton. 2010. Race 3, a new and highly virulent race of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum causing Fusarium wilt in watermelon. Plant Dis. 94:92-98.