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Forests 2017, 8(6), 205; doi:10.3390/f8060205

Short Rotations in Forest Plantations Accelerate Virulence Evolution in Root-Rot Pathogenic Fungi

BIOGECO, INRA, Univ. Bordeaux, 33610 Cestas, France
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Academic Editors: Matteo Garbelotto, Paolo Gonthier and Timothy A. Martin
Received: 7 April 2017 / Revised: 6 June 2017 / Accepted: 6 June 2017 / Published: 10 June 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forest Pathology and Plant Health)
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Abstract

As disease outbreaks in forest plantations are causing concern worldwide, a clear understanding of the influence of silvicultural practices on the development of epidemics is still lacking. Importantly, silvicultural practices are likely to simultaneously affect epidemiological and evolutionary dynamics of pathogen populations. We propose a genetically explicit and individual-based model of virulence evolution in a root-rot pathogenic fungus spreading across forest landscapes, taking the Armillaria ostoyae–Pinus pinaster pathosystem as reference. We used the model to study the effects of rotation length on the evolution of virulence and the propagation of the fungus within a forest landscape composed of even-aged stands regularly altered by clear-cutting and thinning operations. The life cycle of the fungus modeled combines asexual and sexual reproduction modes, and also includes parasitic and saprotrophic phases. Moreover, the tree susceptibility to the pathogen is primarily determined by the age of the stand. Our simulations indicated that the shortest rotation length accelerated both the evolution of virulence and the development of the epidemics, whatever the genetic variability in the initial fungal population and the asexuality rate of the fungal species View Full-Text
Keywords: forestry; tree fungal pathogen; root-rot disease; Heterobasidion annosum; Ganoderma boninense; evolutionary epidemiology; quantitative host–pathogen interaction; asexuality; clonality; saprotrophism forestry; tree fungal pathogen; root-rot disease; Heterobasidion annosum; Ganoderma boninense; evolutionary epidemiology; quantitative host–pathogen interaction; asexuality; clonality; saprotrophism
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Soularue, J.-P.; Robin, C.; Desprez-Loustau, M.-L.; Dutech, C. Short Rotations in Forest Plantations Accelerate Virulence Evolution in Root-Rot Pathogenic Fungi. Forests 2017, 8, 205.

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