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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Food Quality Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #385149

Research Project: Development of Novel Tools to Manage Fungal Plant Pathogens that Cause Postharvest Decay of Pome Fruit to Reduce Food Waste

Location: Food Quality Laboratory

Title: First report of blue mold caused by Penicillium polonicum on apple in the United States

item BRADSHAW, MICHAEL - Orise Fellow
item BARTHOLOMEW, HOLLY - Orise Fellow
item LICHTNER, FRANZ - Dartmouth College
item Gaskins, Verneta
item Jurick, Wayne

Submitted to: Plant Disease
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/31/2021
Publication Date: 9/2/2021
Citation: Bradshaw, M., Bartholomew, H., Lichtner, F., Gaskins, V.L., Jurick II, W.M. 2021. First report of blue mold caused by Penicillium polonicum on apple in the United States. Plant Disease.

Interpretive Summary: Blue mold is one of the main diseases of apples and significantly reduces yield. Proper fungal identification is the first and most important step to a successful integrated pest management plan. In this manuscript we identified a potentially newly introduced pathogen causing blue-mold in the United States. We conducted morphological and genetic analyses to confirm the identification of the fungus as Penicillium polonicum. We subsequently conducted Koch’s postulates to confirm the causal agent of disease. This information is important for the apple industry for which blue mold is a major disease.

Technical Abstract: Apples (Malus domestica, Rosaceae) are one of the most important and economically valuable fruits worldwide. Around 2000, decayed apples from Oregon exhibiting blue mold signs and symptoms were collected. Spores from the causal agent of the disease were isolated. Morphological and genetic analyses were conducted, and the pathogen was subsequently identified as Penicillium polonicum. To the best of our knowledge this is the first report of blue mold caused by P. polonicum in the USA on Apples.