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Special Issue "Pine Pitch Canker—Strategies for Management of Gibberella Circinata in Greenhouses and Forests (PINESTRENGTH)"

A special issue of Forests (ISSN 1999-4907). This special issue belongs to the section "Forest Ecology and Management".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Julio Javier Diez Casero

Forest Pathology, Campus Yutera, Edificio E, Despacho 204, 34071 Palencia, Spain
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Fusarium circinatum; pine forests; nurseries; biological control; silvicultural management; forest diseases
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Stephen Woodward

Department of Plant and Soil Science, Institute of Biological and Environmental Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK
Website | E-Mail

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Fusarium circinatum (teleomorph: Gibberella circinata) was first detected in North America, since then, the pathogen has spread into Central and South America, South Africa, Asia and, more recently, Europe. F. circinatum is now considered the most important pathogen affecting Pinus seedlings and mature trees in many countries globally. The main aim of the PINESTRENGTH Action is to establish a European-focused network to increase knowledge of the biology, ecology and pathways of spread of F. circinatum, to examine the potential for the development of effective and environmentally-friendly prevention and mitigation strategies and to deliver these outcomes to stakeholders and policy makers.

Dr. Julio Javier Diez Casero
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Fusarium circinatum

  • pine forests

  • nurseries

  • pathogen

  • prevention and mitigation strategies

Published Papers (14 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Fungal Communities Associated with Bark Beetles in Pinus radiata Plantations in Northern Spain Affected by Pine Pitch Canker, with Special Focus on Fusarium Species
Forests 2018, 9(11), 698; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9110698
Received: 20 September 2018 / Revised: 6 November 2018 / Accepted: 8 November 2018 / Published: 10 November 2018
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Abstract
Fusarium spp., as well as other endophytic or pathogenic fungi that form communities, have been reported to be phoretically associated with bark beetles (Coleoptera; Scolytinae) worldwide. This applies to Fusarium circinatum Nirenberg and O’Donnell, the causal agent of pine pitch canker (PPC), which [...] Read more.
Fusarium spp., as well as other endophytic or pathogenic fungi that form communities, have been reported to be phoretically associated with bark beetles (Coleoptera; Scolytinae) worldwide. This applies to Fusarium circinatum Nirenberg and O’Donnell, the causal agent of pine pitch canker (PPC), which threatens Pinus radiata D. Don plantations in northern Spain. The main objective of this study was to study the fungal communities associated with bark beetles and their galleries in stands affected by PPC, with special attention given to Fusarium species. Funnel traps and logs were placed in a P. radiata plot known to be affected by F. circinatum. The traps were baited with different attractants: four with (E)-pityol and six with ethanol and α-Pinene. In addition, fresh green shoots with Tomicus piniperda L. feeding galleries were collected from the ground in 25 P. radiata plots affected by PPC. Extracts of whole insects and gallery tissues were plated on agar medium to isolate and identify the associated fungi. A total of 24 different fungal species were isolated from the bark beetle galleries constructed in logs and shoots, while 18 were isolated from the insect exoskeletons. Ten different Fusarium species were isolated from tissue and insects. Fusarium circinatum was isolated from bark beetle exoskeletons (1.05% of the Pityophthorus pubescens Marsham specimens harboured F. circinatum) and from the galleries (3.5% of the T. piniperda feeding galleries harboured the pathogen). The findings provide information about the fungal communities associated with bark beetles in P. radiata stands in northern Spain. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Application of Bioactive Coatings Based on Chitosan and Propolis for Pinus spp. Protection against Fusarium circinatum
Forests 2018, 9(11), 685; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9110685
Received: 25 September 2018 / Revised: 25 October 2018 / Accepted: 26 October 2018 / Published: 2 November 2018
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Abstract
Pine pitch canker (PPC) is a major threat to pine forests worldwide because of the extensive tree deaths, reduced growth, and degradation of timber quality caused by it. Furthermore, the aggressive fungus responsible for this disease (Fusarium circinatum) can also infect [...] Read more.
Pine pitch canker (PPC) is a major threat to pine forests worldwide because of the extensive tree deaths, reduced growth, and degradation of timber quality caused by it. Furthermore, the aggressive fungus responsible for this disease (Fusarium circinatum) can also infect pine seeds, causing damping-off in young seedlings. This study proposes an approach based on coating treatments consisting of natural products to ensure seed protection. Seeds from two pine species (the most sensitive to this disease, Pinus radiata D. Don, and a more resistant one, Pinus sylvestris L.) were coated with single and binary mixtures of low and medium molecular weight chitosan and/or ethanolic-propolis extract. The germination rate, pre- and post-emergence mortality, total phenolic content, and radical scavenging activity were assessed. All treatments, and especially the one based on chitosan oligomers, had a beneficial impact on P. sylvestris seedlings, significantly enhancing survival rates and displaying a positive influence on the total phenolic content and on the seedlings’ radical scavenging activity. Conversely, non-significant negative effects on germination percentages were observed in the case of P. radiata seeds. The proposed treatments show promise for the protection of P. sylvestris seedlings against PPC. Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Fusarium Circinatum Gene Fcrho1, Encoding a Putative Rho1 GTPase, Is Involved in Vegetative Growth but Dispensable for Pathogenic Development
Forests 2018, 9(11), 684; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9110684
Received: 5 October 2018 / Revised: 26 October 2018 / Accepted: 29 October 2018 / Published: 31 October 2018
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Abstract
Fusarium circinatum is the causal agent of pine pitch canker (PPC), one of the most devastating forest diseases worldwide. This fungus causes severe damping-off in pine seedlings and growth reduction, wilting and the development of cankers in pine forests and plantations. A draft [...] Read more.
Fusarium circinatum is the causal agent of pine pitch canker (PPC), one of the most devastating forest diseases worldwide. This fungus causes severe damping-off in pine seedlings and growth reduction, wilting and the development of cankers in pine forests and plantations. A draft of the complete genome sequence of this phytopathogen was recently made available. This information was used to annotate in silico the gene Fcrho1 as a putative homolog of Rho1 GTPase genes. In this study, we generated Fcrho1 deletion mutants in two F. circinatum wildtype strains isolated from damaged trees in northern Spain. For that, we used a modified version of the OSCAR methodology, an approach not previously used in F. circinatum that allows the generation of deletion constructs in a single cloning step. The conidiation and spore germination of the resulting deletion mutants were not affected, neither the hyphal morphology. However, the mutant strains showed significantly reduced growth in vitro and more foamy macroscopic hyphal morphology than their corresponding ectopic and wildtype strains. Finally, an in vivo virulence assay showed that the reduced in vitro growth rate characteristic to the deletion mutants does not impact their pathogenicity. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Low-Cost Spore Trap Allows Collection and Real-Time PCR Quantification of Airborne Fusarium circinatum Spores
Forests 2018, 9(10), 586; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9100586
Received: 8 August 2018 / Revised: 10 September 2018 / Accepted: 13 September 2018 / Published: 20 September 2018
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Abstract
A variety of commercial instruments are available for sampling and quantifying microscopic airborne organisms from the environment. Although most samplers are highly sensitive, they are also expensive, costing thousands of dollars per unit, a price that is out of reach for many researchers, [...] Read more.
A variety of commercial instruments are available for sampling and quantifying microscopic airborne organisms from the environment. Although most samplers are highly sensitive, they are also expensive, costing thousands of dollars per unit, a price that is out of reach for many researchers, especially those looking to design experiments with replication. While looking at options to monitor pine stands for the presence of Fusarium circinatum, the causal agent of pitch canker disease, on multiple sites with several units per site, we developed a simple, low-cost spore trap that allows surveying spore abundance in outdoor environments. The trap consists of a rotating motor that holds a metal rod and two petroleum jelly-coated microscope slides. As the motor rotates, the slides collect airborne particles. To test whether the traps allowed detection of F. circinatum spores, we placed six traps on three sites: an actively-managed slash pine commercial stand located in Lake Butler, FL, a semi-managed loblolly and slash pine stand near Gainesville, FL, and a site with little perturbance at Goethe State Forest, FL, consisting of mainly slash pine trees. The slides were replaced weekly, and F. circinatum was detected by quantitative PCR using species-specific primers. Results show detection of low levels ( X ¯ = 1.7–77.1 picograms ± SE = 0.3–39.7) of the pathogen spores with high reproducibility. These traps offer a low-cost solution to spore, pollen, or small insect trapping experiments for initial or general assessment of a pathogen or species population. Their low cost has the added benefit that multiple traps can be deployed per experiment, thus increasing statistical power by using multiple replications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle EU Legislation on Forest Plant Health: An Overview with a Focus on Fusarium circinatum
Forests 2018, 9(9), 568; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9090568
Received: 31 July 2018 / Revised: 7 September 2018 / Accepted: 12 September 2018 / Published: 14 September 2018
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Abstract
The increase in arrivals of new forest pests highlights the need for effective phytosanitary legislation and measures. This paper introduces legislation targeted at prevention and management of potential introductions of forest pests and pathogens. An overview is given on plant health regulations on [...] Read more.
The increase in arrivals of new forest pests highlights the need for effective phytosanitary legislation and measures. This paper introduces legislation targeted at prevention and management of potential introductions of forest pests and pathogens. An overview is given on plant health regulations on global and regional level with detailed information on the situation in the European Union (EU). The current and new European legislation is discussed, and a particular focus is given on eradication and contingency plans for Fusarium circinatum. We identified key aspects relevant for the improvement of the efficacy of measures aimed to prevent alien pests. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Comparative Study of the Pathogenicity of Fusarium circinatum and other Fusarium Species in Polish Provenances of P. sylvestris L.
Forests 2018, 9(9), 560; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9090560
Received: 8 August 2018 / Revised: 6 September 2018 / Accepted: 7 September 2018 / Published: 12 September 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (892 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The fungal pathogen Fusarium circinatum is the causal agent of Pine Pitch Canker (PPC), a disease which seriously affects different species of pine in forests and nurseries worldwide. In Europe, the fungus affects pines in northern Spain and Portugal, and it has also [...] Read more.
The fungal pathogen Fusarium circinatum is the causal agent of Pine Pitch Canker (PPC), a disease which seriously affects different species of pine in forests and nurseries worldwide. In Europe, the fungus affects pines in northern Spain and Portugal, and it has also been detected in France and Italy. Here, we report the findings of the first trial investigating the susceptibility of Polish provenances of Scots pine, Pinus sylvestris L., to infection by F. circinatum. In a greenhouse experiment, 16 Polish provenances of Scots pine were artificially inoculated with F. circinatum and with six other Fusarium species known to infect pine seedlings in nurseries. All pines proved highly susceptible to PPC and displayed different levels of susceptibility to the other Fusarium spp. tested. The findings obtained indicate the potentially strong threat of establishment of an invasive pathogen such as F. circinatum following unintentional introduction into Poland. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Application of Trichoderma spp. Complex and Biofumigation to Control Damping-Off of Pinus radiata D. Don Caused by Fusarium circinatum Nirenberg and O’Donnell
Forests 2018, 9(7), 421; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9070421
Received: 1 June 2018 / Revised: 3 July 2018 / Accepted: 11 July 2018 / Published: 12 July 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2941 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The damping-off of Pinus radiata D.Don by Fusarium circinatum Nirenberg and O’Donnell represents a limiting factor in nursery production, while seed contamination with the pathogen is one of the main pathways of the pathogen movement between areas. Chemical and physical treatments have been [...] Read more.
The damping-off of Pinus radiata D.Don by Fusarium circinatum Nirenberg and O’Donnell represents a limiting factor in nursery production, while seed contamination with the pathogen is one of the main pathways of the pathogen movement between areas. Chemical and physical treatments have been applied with encouraging results and some limitations. In the present study, biocontrol of damping-off by F. circinatum is proposed with Trichoderma spp. complex showing complementary antagonism and biofumigation with commercial Brassica carinata A. Braun pellets with biocidal effect. Experiments were conducted in vitro and in vivo using batches of P. radiata seeds and two F. circinatum isolates. Results were highly positive, showing an excellent efficacy of a combination of Trichoderma spp. in a single preparation to reduce significantly the mortality of P. radiata seedlings in seeds bed experiment. Biofumigation with B. carinata pellets also showed efficacy in controlling the F. circinatum inoculum and reducing seed mortality in inoculated seed batches although showing some phytotoxic effect. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication Vertical Transmission of Fusarium circinatum Mitoviruses FcMV1 and FcMV2-2 via Microconidia
Forests 2018, 9(6), 356; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9060356
Received: 1 April 2018 / Revised: 18 May 2018 / Accepted: 21 May 2018 / Published: 14 June 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1124 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Pine Pitch Canker disease, caused by the pathogenic fungus Fusarium circinatum, affects conifer species worldwide. However, the virulence of the pathogen may be affected by the presence of mycoviruses. The aim of this laboratory-based study was to investigate the probability and rate [...] Read more.
Pine Pitch Canker disease, caused by the pathogenic fungus Fusarium circinatum, affects conifer species worldwide. However, the virulence of the pathogen may be affected by the presence of mycoviruses. The aim of this laboratory-based study was to investigate the probability and rate of transmission of F. circinatum mitoviruses FcMV1 and FcMV2-2 via microconidia. Ten isolates of mitovirus-infected F. circinatum were subcultured to produce a total of 100 single-spore colonies (ten replicates per isolate). The total RNA and cDNA obtained from each spore isolate (monosporic culture) were amplified by PCR with specific primers for detection of F. circinatum mitoviruses FcMV1 and FcMV2-2. The mitoviruses were detected in a high percentage of the individual spore isolates (between 60% and 100% depending on the fungal isolate). However, the probability of transmission was not statistically significantly associated with either the F. circinatum isolate or the viral strain. A high proportion of transmission via microconidia is critical for development of a biological control program against Pine Pitch Canker (PPC) disease in forests. However, further studies are needed to establish the effect of these mitoviruses on the virulence of F. circinatum. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Root Infection of Canker Pathogens, Fusarium circinatum and Diplodia sapinea, in Asymptomatic Trees in Pinus radiata and Pinus pinaster Plantations
Forests 2018, 9(3), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9030128
Received: 31 January 2018 / Revised: 28 February 2018 / Accepted: 6 March 2018 / Published: 8 March 2018
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Abstract
The existence of a latent stage within host tissue of the pine pathogens Fusarium circinatum and Diplodia sapinea, the causal agents of pitch canker and shoot blight disease respectively, has previously been cited. However, studies on this cryptic phase in each disease lifecycle [...] Read more.
The existence of a latent stage within host tissue of the pine pathogens Fusarium circinatum and Diplodia sapinea, the causal agents of pitch canker and shoot blight disease respectively, has previously been cited. However, studies on this cryptic phase in each disease lifecycle has only been focused on the host aerial parts but not on the roots. Therefore, our objective was to analyze the presence of both pathogens in roots of non-symptomatic mature trees in plantations where the pathogens are known to be causing canker symptoms. For that, we sampled roots from ten non-symptomatic and ten symptomatic trees in three Pinus radiata and one Pinus pinaster plantations in Basque Country, Spain. Both pathogens were isolated from roots of non-symptomatic trees in a higher frequency than from roots of symptomatic trees, 23.3% and 6.6% respectively for D. sapinea and 16.6% and 3.3% respectively for F. circinatum. Neither pathogens was detected in the P. pinaster plantation. The two pathogens were never isolated from the same tree. A high molecular variability was observed for D. sapinea isolates with six different haplotypes and two mating types for the eleven characterized isolates, but only one haplotype and mating type was found for F. circinatum, with all isolates of both fungi being proved pathogenic. These results evidence the importance root infection may have in the disease lifecycle and, therefore, disease management. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Evaluation of the Susceptibility of Several Czech Conifer Provenances to Fusarium circinatum
Forests 2018, 9(2), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9020072
Received: 29 December 2017 / Revised: 18 January 2018 / Accepted: 24 January 2018 / Published: 1 February 2018
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1499 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Pine pitch canker (PPC), caused by Fusarium circinatum, is considered among the most important diseases affecting pines in many locations throughout the world. In Europe, F. circinatum is currently present in the Iberian Peninsula, posing a high risk of its spread into [...] Read more.
Pine pitch canker (PPC), caused by Fusarium circinatum, is considered among the most important diseases affecting pines in many locations throughout the world. In Europe, F. circinatum is currently present in the Iberian Peninsula, posing a high risk of its spread into currently disease-free countries in Europe. In the present study, the susceptibility of Pinus sylvestris, Picea abies, and Larix decidua originating in the Czech Republic to F. circinatum was tested. Furthermore, the presence of asymptomatic yet infected seedlings was also checked. This study demonstrated the pathogenicity of F. circinatum to the Czech provenance of P. sylvestris, whereas Picea abies and Larix decidua proved to be tolerant. The reisolation of F. circinatum beyond the inoculation point demonstrated that this quarantine pathogen is able to infect the three conifers tested, giving rise to asymptomatic seedlings for at least eight and a half months. To our knowledge, this is the first study in which the presence of symptomless seedlings has been recorded in the genera Picea and Larix. This finding points out that the European legislation would fail to avoid the risk of new introductions via symptomless seedlings, since this legislation is only restricted to plants of the genus Pinus and the species Pseudotsuga menziesii. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Phenotypical and Molecular Characterisation of Fusarium circinatum: Correlation with Virulence and Fungicide Sensitivity
Forests 2017, 8(11), 458; https://doi.org/10.3390/f8110458
Received: 25 October 2017 / Revised: 6 November 2017 / Accepted: 16 November 2017 / Published: 21 November 2017
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (2511 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Fusarium circinatum, causing pine pitch canker, is one of the most damaging pathogens of Pinus species. This study investigated the use of phenotypical and molecular characteristics to delineate groups in a worldwide collection of isolates. The groups correlated with virulence and fungicide [...] Read more.
Fusarium circinatum, causing pine pitch canker, is one of the most damaging pathogens of Pinus species. This study investigated the use of phenotypical and molecular characteristics to delineate groups in a worldwide collection of isolates. The groups correlated with virulence and fungicide sensitivity, which were tested in a subset of isolates. Virulence tests of twenty isolates on P. radiata, P. sylvestris and P. pinaster demonstrated differences in host susceptibility, with P. radiata most susceptible and P. sylvestris least susceptible. Sensitivity to the fungicides fludioxonil and pyraclostrobin varied considerably between isolates from highly effective (half-maximal effective concentration (EC50) < 0.1 ppm) to ineffective (EC50 > 100 ppm). This study demonstrates the potential use of simply acquired phenotypical (cultural, morphological) and molecular metrics to gain a preliminary estimate of virulence and sensitivity to certain fungicides. It also highlights the necessity of including a range of isolates in fungicide tests and host susceptibility assays, particularly of relevance to tree breeding programmes. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Spore Dispersal Patterns of Fusarium circinatum on an Infested Monterey Pine Forest in North-Western Spain
Forests 2017, 8(11), 432; https://doi.org/10.3390/f8110432
Received: 30 September 2017 / Revised: 26 October 2017 / Accepted: 7 November 2017 / Published: 15 November 2017
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1871 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The airborne inoculum of Fusarium circinatum Nirenberg & O’Donnell, the fungal pathogen causing Pine Pitch Canker (PPC), is one of the main means of spread of the disease in forest stands and forest nurseries. Since this world-wide known pathogen was introduced in Europe, [...] Read more.
The airborne inoculum of Fusarium circinatum Nirenberg & O’Donnell, the fungal pathogen causing Pine Pitch Canker (PPC), is one of the main means of spread of the disease in forest stands and forest nurseries. Since this world-wide known pathogen was introduced in Europe, its biology in this newly infested area still remains scarcely known. To shed more light on this topic, we set up an experiment on a naturally PPC infested forest of Monterey pine in Galicia (NW Spain) with the following two goals: (i) to describe the seasonal spore dispersal pattern during one year of regular sampling and (ii) to assess the spatial spore dispersal pattern around the infested plot. Portable rotating arm spore traps were used and complemented with meteorological measurements. The abundance of F. circinatum spores in the samples was assessed by quantitative PCR (qPCR) with a hydrolysis probe. The results showed almost permanent occurrence of the air inoculum throughout the whole year, being detected in 27 of the 30 samplings. No clear temporal trends were observed, but a higher air inoculum was favoured by previous lower air temperatures and lower leaf wetness. Conversely, neither rainfall nor air humidity seemed to have any significant importance. The spatial spread of the inoculum was noted to be successful up to a distance of 1000 m in the wind direction, even with winds of just 5 m·s−1. Our study shows that rotating arm spore traps combined with qPCR may be an efficient tool for F. circinatum detection. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Susceptibility of Several Northeastern Conifers to Fusarium circinatum and Strategies for Biocontrol
Forests 2017, 8(9), 318; https://doi.org/10.3390/f8090318
Received: 11 July 2017 / Revised: 14 August 2017 / Accepted: 18 August 2017 / Published: 30 August 2017
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (1739 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Fusarium circinatum, the causal of pine pitch canker disease (PPC), is now considered among the most important pathogens of Pinaceae in the world. Although in Europe PPC is only established in the Iberian Peninsula, the potential endangered areas cover over 10 million [...] Read more.
Fusarium circinatum, the causal of pine pitch canker disease (PPC), is now considered among the most important pathogens of Pinaceae in the world. Although in Europe PPC is only established in the Iberian Peninsula, the potential endangered areas cover over 10 million hectares under the current host distribution and climatic conditions. It is therefore a priority to test the susceptibility of those species and their provenances, within Central and Northern Europe and find biological control agents (BCAs) against the disease. In this study, the susceptibility of Pinus sylvestris, P. mugo and Picea abies Romanian provenances to F. circinatum was tested using three inoculum doses. In parallel, the potential use of Trichoderma atroviride and Trichoderma viride as BCAs against F. circinatum was also tested. This study has demonstrated, for the first time, the susceptibility of P. mugo to F. circinatum. Likewise, the susceptibility of P. abies was also confirmed. The fact that the Romanian provenance of P. sylvestris has not been susceptible to F. circinatum suggests genetic resistance as a potential tool to manage the disease. This, together with the apparent effectiveness of Trichoderma species as BCAs, seems to indicate that an integrated management of the disease might be feasible. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Sydowia polyspora Dominates Fungal Communities Carried by Two Tomicus Species in Pine Plantations Threatened by Fusarium circinatum
Forests 2017, 8(4), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/f8040127
Received: 6 March 2017 / Revised: 12 April 2017 / Accepted: 17 April 2017 / Published: 20 April 2017
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (1356 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Bark beetles (Coleoptera, Scolytinae) carry a diverse filamentous fungal community sometimes acting as vectors or carriers of phytopathogens. In this study, mycobiota carried by two Tomicus species (Tomicus piniperda and Tomicus destruens) were investigated through (i) morphological and molecular identification of [...] Read more.
Bark beetles (Coleoptera, Scolytinae) carry a diverse filamentous fungal community sometimes acting as vectors or carriers of phytopathogens. In this study, mycobiota carried by two Tomicus species (Tomicus piniperda and Tomicus destruens) were investigated through (i) morphological and molecular identification of taxa; (ii) taxonomic richness, diversity, evenness, dominance and phoresy indices; (iii) ecological network analysis and (iv) statistical co-occurrence analysis. The studied mycobiota were formed by eleven taxa and showed a moderate fungal diversity with low evenness. The fungus Sydowia polyspora was significantly abundant and dominated the community. All the fungal taxa were randomly associated. Both insect species (T. piniperda and T. destruens) were collected from plantations of Pinus radiata infected by Fusarium circinatum. The ecological factors that could drive community ecology and phoretic links between fungi and bark beetles are discussed. Full article
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