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Effect of chitin compost and broth on biological control of Meloidogyne incognita on tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.)

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image of Nematology
For more content, see Nematologica.

Plant-parasitic nematodes are distributed worldwide and affect a broad range of important agronomic plant species. Chitinolytic bacteria were evaluated as potential biological control agents of the root-knot nematode, Meloidogyne incognita, on tomato. After transplantation of seedlings into pots containing soil amended with chitin compost, chitin broth, or respective controls, soil was inoculated with nematode eggs and infective second-stage juveniles (J2). Samples taken at 4, 6 and 8 weeks after inoculation indicated that fresh weights of plants did not vary between treatments or between treatments and controls. The gall index was lower in the plants grown in the chitin-amended soil at each time point. Activities of soil chitinase and β-1,3-glucanase were greater in those soils amended with chitin compost and chitin broth. Gall index of tomato root was negatively correlated with soil chitinase activity. Activities of tomato root chitinase and β-1,3-glucanase were higher in plants growing in non-chitin-amended soil at 6 and 8 weeks after nematode infestation. Chitinase activity in tomato root was positively correlated with the gall index of tomato root. The results indicate the potential of chitinase producing bacteria to alleviate nematode parasitism in important vegetable crops.


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