ANDREU Adriana Balbina
congresos y reuniones científicas
Phosphites in potato disease management and their role in sustainable improvement of yield and quality
Congreso; 7th World Potato Congress in Christchurch, New Zealand.; 2009
Institución organizadora:
World Potato Congress Inc. Farm Centre. Charlottetown, Canada
In Argentina, and other regions of the world, conventional potato production is not possible without fungicides. However, fungicides increase production costs and those commonly used are considered environmental and human health hazards. Phosphites are low-toxicity compounds derived from phosphorous acid that combined with different cations, such as K or Ca, can be used within an integrated crop management program. While phosphites are widely used to protect many crops against Phytophthora pathogens, they have not been extensively tested for control of Late blight and other potato diseases. Phosphites promote, not only activation of plant defense mechanisms, but also crop development. Research work carried out in Argentina studied phytopathological, physiological and biochemical responses in the potato. Results showed a number of promising properties associated with these compounds. Calcium or potassium phosphites (CaPhi and KPhi, respectively) applied to seed tubers immediately after cutting at 3 litre ha-1 promoted early emergence, increased stem number and stem diameter, produced earlier tuber initiation and increased the number of tubers per plant in cultivars Bannock Russet, Shepody, Spunta and Kennebec. Ground cover and chlorophyll content were also enhanced by CaPhi or KPhi treatments. In addition to these physiological effects, seed tuber treatment with phosphites increased resistance against Phytophthora infestans, Fusarium solani and Rhizoctonia solani. Protection was high against P. infestans, intermediate against F. solani and low against R. solani for all cultivars tested. Foliar application of CaPhi or KPhi provided protection against P. infestans in all cultivars, although protection degree was cultivar-specific. Protection was significantly higher at early stages of crop development. Expression of â-1,3-glucanases was induced at different times after treatment but no correlation between â-1,3-glucanases expression and foliar protection level was found. Tubers from plants treated with 4 foliar applications of CaPhi or KPhi showed a smaller colony diameter of P .infestans and a reduction of the lesion area caused by F. solani and Erwinia caratovora when artificially infected; KPhi had a larger effect than CaPhi. Same tubers had an increase in the activities of chitinases, peroxidases, serin protease inhibitors and polygalacturonase inhibiting protein, which is consistent with the expected role of these products in stimulating host resistance. However, these responses were also cultivar and compound dependent. Preliminary studies showed that the periderm thickness of potato tubers increased in tubers from treated plants (KPhi), with different arrangement of cell wall proteins. On the other hand, pectin extracts, showed that these are modified by KPhi treatment or F. solani infection. Morpho-histological analysis will contribute to determine if these changes in the cell wall architecture are part of the defense responses induced by KPhi. Phosphite applications caused an increase in total yield in all cultivars except Spunta. Based on these results, it is concluded that KPhi and CaPhi play an important role in potato disease management, in enhancing yield and tuber quality. The response to Phi treatment depends on both the type of Phi and the cultivar analyzed. This is of interest to further utilizations of Phi in integrated crop management strategies.