University Of Tasmania

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Germinate to exterminate: chemical stimulation of Spongospora subterranea resting spore germination and its potential to diminish soil inoculum

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-19, 18:29 authored by Balendres, MA, Clark, TJ, Robert TeggRobert Tegg, Calum WilsonCalum Wilson
Hoagland’s solution (HS), a defined nutrient supplement for plants, has been previously reported to stimulate zoospore release from resting spores of the potato pathogen Spongospora subterranea f. sp. subterranea. This study obtained direct empirical evidence for an increase in zoospore release with HS treatment, and identified Fe-EDTA as the stimulant component of HS. Stimulation of resting spores by HS and Fe-EDTA resulted in greater and earlier zoospore release compared to a distilled water control, and in the presence of a susceptible tomato host plant resulted in enhanced root infection. Given the labile nature of S. subterranea zoospores, it was postulated that stimulation of premature release of zoospores from the dormant resting spores in absence of susceptible hosts could reduce soil inoculum levels. In two glasshouse trials in the absence of host plants, both Fe-EDTA and HS soil treatments reduced S. subterranea soil inoculum levels, providing proof of concept for the ‘germinate to exterminate’ approach to inoculum management.


Horticulture Innovation Australia


Publication title

Plant Pathology








Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA)


Blackwell Publishing Ltd

Place of publication

9600 Garsington Rd, Oxford, England, Oxon, Ox4 2Dg

Rights statement

Copyright 2017 British Society for Plant Pathology

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Field grown vegetable crops