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A Quantitative Study of Changes Induced By Xiphinema Diversica Uda Tum in Root-Tip Galls of Strawberry and Ryegrass

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Xiphinema diversicaudatum induced similar morphological changes in root-tips of strawberry, a good host, and ryegrass, a poorer host. After nematodes had fed for 1, 2, and 4 days the feeding site became surrounded by multinucleate hypertrophied cells with amoeboid-shaped nuclei, enlarged nucleoli and dense cytoplasm. Cell complexes also developed in association with the stelar initials in strawberry but not in rycgrass. There was an increase in the proportion of cytoplasm, from 47% to 56% of the root-tip volume, and a reduction in the proportion of vacuole from 40% to 28% after 1 day in strawberry. There was no change in the proportion of these components in ryegrass after nematodes had fed for 1 day. The total volume of the root-tip increased more in strawberry (8.5 x ) than in ryegrass (3.6 x ), but the concentrations of RNA and protein progressively decreased. Total RNA and protein both increased 3.4 x after 4 days in strawberry, but in ryegrass protein increased 2.7 x and RNA 5.4 x after 4 days. These results support an earlier hypothesis that strawberry nuclei are more transcriptionally active than ryegrass nuclei, and suggest that the metabolism of the two host plants had responded differently to feeding by X. diversicaudatum.

Affiliations: 1: Scottish Crop Research Institute, Invergowric, Dundee DD2 5DA, Scotland


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