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Analysis of Host-Parasite Relationships of Root-Knot Nematodes By Single-Larva Inoculations of Excised Tomato Roots

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For more content, see Nematology.

This report describes a bacteria-free culture unit to be used in large numbers for detailed analysis of host-parasite relationships of Meloidogyne sp. The unit consists of an excised tomato root growing in agar medium in a test tube to which one nematode larva has been added. Almost every nematode which penetrates induces a gall; a high proportion of these galls have eggs externally after 3 weeks of incubation at 28° C. Galls appear from the 1st to the 9th day, eggs from the 18th to the 26th day, and larvae from the 25th to the 32nd day after inoculation. Infectivity of Meloidogyne incognita acrita was 53%. Variations in nutrient composition had no marked effects except that high potassium stimulated egg production without affecting incidence of gall formation; high concentrations of iodine increased brown discoloration of galls. Addition of juice from a resistant plant (Cornus florida) depressed the infectivity of M. incognita acrita for tomato roots. A resistant variety of tomato, Nemared, maintained its resistance to Meloidogyne in excised root culture.

Affiliations: 1: Nematology Investigations, Crops Protection Research Branch, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Beltsville, Maryland


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