Special Issue "Biocontrol of Mycotoxins Contamination of Crops"

A special issue of Agronomy (ISSN 2073-4395). This special issue belongs to the section "Crop Breeding and Genetics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 March 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Vladimir Vujanovic
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Food and Bioproduct Sciences, University of Saskatchewan, 51 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, SK, S7N 5A8, Canada
Interests: molecular mycology and biotechnology; microbiome and endosymbionts; biocontrol; mycotoxins

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

Projected climate change and use of chemical pesticides in agronomy have direct effect(s) on the staple crops and food commodities. A critical component of this impact is an augmented infection of agriculture crops by mycotoxigenic fungal pathogens and contamination with >250 mycotoxins produced by thousands of ubiquitous molds. The contamination with mycotoxins is further amplified during harvesting, handling, storage, distribution of agricultural commodities and trade globalization.

Mycotoxigenic fungal outbreaks are a chronic threat for crop yield and safety, human and animal health worldwide. Hence, regulatory authorities impose strict standards for improving control strategies, whereas agriculture practices are implementing high quality control systems. Therefore, the food security researchers and crop growers are seeking eco-friendly biocontrol solutions to minimize mycotoxins in grain infected by fungi or molds and to reduce pesticide inputs.

Biocontrol approach is using beneficial microbial antagonists alone, via pre- and post-harvest treatments, or within an integrated control strategy. It has emerged as a promising approach to control mycotoxins in crops and to reduce the impact of mycotoxins in the food and feed chains. Historic advancements in the use of biocontrol strategies have led to registration of commercial products with increased practical applications for the benefit of growers worldwide. However, recent scientific papers have indicated an important gap in understanding of the biocontrol agents, their lifestyles and critical behavioral traits for more efficient protection of crops, prevention of pre-harvest contamination and/or accumulation of mycotoxins, improved decontamination and/or detoxification of mycotoxins from contaminated grains/foods/feeds, thus minimizing risks for consumers. This topic requires more knowledge to be generated for biocontrol antagonists across crops, cropping systems, tolerance to climate change and pesticides, soil types, and geographies. Hence, the emphasis of this Special Issue of the Agronomy journal is put on vital biocontrol aspects; the antagonistic microbial agents against mycotoxigenic fungal diseases and their mycotoxins in different crops and so from both theoretical and practical or applicative standpoints.

I would like to invite contributions from broad scientific community, governmental institutions and regulators, industries and growers interested to reduce pesticide inputs for sustainable agriculture and to advance this topic for well-being of society, economy and public health.

Prof. Dr. Vladimir Vujanovic
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agronomy is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • agronomy
  • biological control agents (BCAs)
  • species or taxa
  • mycotoxigenic fungi
  • molds
  • mycotoxins
  • crops
  • genetics, genomes, transcriptomes, proteomes
  • pre-harvest
  • post-harvest
  • food
  • BCA formulation
  • BCA application

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Review

Open AccessReview
Fusarium Head Blight, Mycotoxins and Strategies for Their Reduction
Agronomy 2020, 10(4), 509; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10040509 - 02 Apr 2020
Cited by 6
Abstract
Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites of microscopic fungi, which commonly contaminate cereal grains. Contamination of small-grain cereals and maize with toxic metabolites of fungi, both pathogenic and saprotrophic, is one of the particularly important problems in global agriculture. Fusarium species are among the dangerous [...] Read more.
Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites of microscopic fungi, which commonly contaminate cereal grains. Contamination of small-grain cereals and maize with toxic metabolites of fungi, both pathogenic and saprotrophic, is one of the particularly important problems in global agriculture. Fusarium species are among the dangerous cereal pathogens with a high toxicity potential. Secondary metabolites of these fungi, such as deoxynivalenol, zearalenone and fumonisin B1 are among five most important mycotoxins on a European and world scale. The use of various methods to limit the development of Fusarium cereal head diseases and grain contamination with mycotoxins, before and after harvest, is an important element of sustainable agriculture and production of safe food. The applied strategies utilize chemical and non-chemical methods, including agronomic, physical and biological treatments. Biological methods now occupy a special place in plant protection as an element of biocontrol of fungal pathogens by inhibiting their development and reducing mycotoxins in grain. According to the literature, Good Agricultural Practices are the best line of defense for controlling Fusarium toxin contamination of cereal and maize grains. However, fluctuations in weather conditions can significantly reduce the effectiveness of plants protection methods against infection with Fusarium spp. and grain accumulation of mycotoxins. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biocontrol of Mycotoxins Contamination of Crops)
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Open AccessReview
Natural Compounds as Elicitors of Plant Resistance Against Diseases and New Biocontrol Strategies
Agronomy 2020, 10(2), 173; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10020173 - 25 Jan 2020
Cited by 4
Abstract
The goal of sustainable and organic agriculture is to optimize the health and productivity of interdependent communities of soil life, plants, animals, and people. Organic plant production uses natural products and natural self-regulation processes occurring in the ecosystem. The availability of innovative applications [...] Read more.
The goal of sustainable and organic agriculture is to optimize the health and productivity of interdependent communities of soil life, plants, animals, and people. Organic plant production uses natural products and natural self-regulation processes occurring in the ecosystem. The availability of innovative applications and molecular techniques opens up new possibilities in the approach to plant protection for sustainable and organic agriculture. New strategies not only directly protect plants against pathogens but can also induce enhanced immunity that permanently protects against pathogenic strains. This review focuses on the bioactive properties of selected natural compounds (of plant and animal origin), their action on pathogens, and their roles in the mechanism of inducing plant resistance. The author presents selected activities of organic bioactive compounds, such as allicin, naringin, terpenes, laminarin, carrageenans, chitin and chitosan, and outlines the possibilities for their application in protecting crop plants against diseases. In addition, this mini review describes the mechanism of action of the above compounds as elicitors of defense reactions in the plant and the possibility of their utilization in the production of biological preparations as elements of a new plant protection strategy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biocontrol of Mycotoxins Contamination of Crops)
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