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The Effects of Gamma Radiation On Heterodera Rostochiensis

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For more content, see Nematology.

Cysts, second stage larvae and adult males and females of H. rostochiensis were exposed to 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 and 64 kilorads of gamma radiation. Hatching from cysts exposed to potato root-diffusate for 3 days before irradiation was decreased, and some eggs were killed after only 2 kilorads, but hatching from air-dried cysts was stimulated by the smaller doses in one experiment. Irradiation of second stage larvae had no effect on their activity, but irradiation of either cysts or larvae impaired development of the F1 generation: fewer cysts with fewer eggs than those in unirradiated controls were formed, and many of the eggs lacked normal larvae. Adults were more resistant than hatched larvae or larvae within cysts to irradiation. Small doses affected the fertility of adult females more than that of males, probably because the primary oocytes continue dividing after mating, whereas all the sperm is formed by the time the males leave the roots. Larvae from irradiated cysts competed poorly with those from unirradiated cysts when potato plants were inoculated with mixtures of the two.

Affiliations: 1: Rothamsted Experimental Station, Haipenden, Herts., England


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