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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: A DNA Assay for the Detection of Choke in Orchardgrass

Authors
item Baldwin, James
item Dombrowski, James
item Alderman, Stephen

Submitted to: Seed Production Research at Oregon State University
Publication Type: Experiment Station
Publication Acceptance Date: February 28, 2005
Publication Date: April 30, 2005
Citation: Baldwin, J.C., Dombrowski, J.E., Alderman, S.C. 2005. A DNA assay for the detection of choke in orchardgrass. Seed Production Research at Oregon State University. p. 19-20.

Interpretive Summary: A method for the detection of Epichloë typhina, causal agent of choke, using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in infected orchardgrass plants (Dactylis glomerata L.) was developed. Choke is an important disease of orchardgrass. In infested fields, up to a third of reproductive tillers can be infected. The fungus produces a stroma on each infected reproductive tiller, blocking seed head emergence, resulting in no seed production. Once infected, plants remain infected throughout the life of the plant, however stromata do not always develop on infected plants. Very little is known about the infection and spread of E. typhina in orchardgrass seed production fields. It is not known when or how infections occur in the plant or the latent period between infection and manifestation of symptoms. To understand the disease process, there is a need for a highly specific and sensitive assay to detect the presence of E. typhina in orchardgrass plants. This PCR based detection of E. typhina in orchardgrass offers a fast, sensitive method to screen for latent infections in vegetative tissues.

Technical Abstract: A method for the detection of Epichloë typhina, causal agent of choke, using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in infected orchardgrass plants (Dactylis glomerata L.) was developed. Choke is an important disease of orchardgrass. In infested fields, up to a third of reproductive tillers can be infected. The fungus produces a stroma on each infected reproductive tiller, blocking seed head emergence, resulting in no seed production. Once infected, plants remain infected throughout the life of the plant, however stromata do not always develop on infected plants. Very little is known about the infection and spread of E. typhina in orchardgrass seed production fields. It is not known when or how infections occur in the plant or the latent period between infection and manifestation of symptoms. To understand the disease process, there is a need for a highly specific and sensitive assay to detect the presence of E. typhina in orchardgrass plants. This PCR based detection of E. typhina in orchardgrass offers a fast, sensitive method to screen for latent infections in vegetative tissues.

Last Modified: 7/31/2014
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