Submitted to: Journal of Cotton Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/19/2011
Publication Date: 8/2/2011
Citation: Bennett, R.S., O'Neill, W., Smith, L., Hutmacher, R.B. 2011. Commercial detergents effective against conidia and chlamydospores of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. vasinfectum. J. Cotton Sci. 15:162-169.
Interpretive Summary: Because soilborne plant pathogens can be spread among fields as spores in soil through contaminated farming machinery, cleaning equipment before entering and after leaving fields is an important disease containment strategy. Non-corrosive cleansers as effective as bleach for disinfecting pathogens would aid such efforts. Our objective was to find cleansers available in the U.S. for use against the soilborne pathogen causing Fusarium wilt of cotton. Twenty-seven cleansers were tested for their ability to kill spores of this fungus in water and in soil. Seven cleansers killed all spores in water at a 1% concentration, and four cleansers (Simple Green d Pro 3, Trewax Nature’s Orange, Formula 409 Antibacterial All Purpose Cleaner, and Formula 409 Orange Cleaner Degreaser) gave similar results as bleach with smaller concentrations against spores in water. However, none of the cleansers performed as well as bleach against spores in soil. Thus, these cleansers are suitable non-corrosive alternatives to bleach for disinfecting equipment but only after completely removing soil.
Technical Abstract: Current containment recommendations for limiting the spread of race 4 of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. vasinfectum in California lack non-corrosive yet effective alternatives to bleach for sanitizing equipment used in farming operations. To find an equivalent to Farmcleanse, an Australian product recommended for sanitizing equipment of the Fusarium wilt pathogen, twenty-seven cleansers and degreasers commercially available in the U. S. were tested for their ability to kill spores of race 4 of F. oxysporum f. sp. vasinfectum. All treatments were tested against conidia in vitro at a 1:10 (v/v) dilution in water. Those demonstrating anti-fungal activity were tested at increasing aqueous dilutions (up to 1:100,000), against chlamydospores in vitro, and chlamydospores in soil. Seven products were effective against conidia at a 1% concentration, and four products (Simple Green d Pro 3, Trewax Nature’s Orange, Formula 409 Antibacterial All Purpose Cleaner, and Formula 409 Orange Cleaner Degreaser) gave similar results as bleach at small concentrations on both conidia and chlamydospores in vitro. Quaternary ammonium compounds, n-alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chlorides and/or didecyl dimethyl ammonium chloride, were present in three of these four products. None of the treatments performed as well as bleach against chlamydospores in soil. These results reveal useful alternatives to bleach, and point to the importance of completely removing soil from equipment prior to spraying with anti-fungal treatments.