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Variation in In Vitro a -Amylase and Protease Activity Is Related to the Virulence of Aspergillus flavus Isolates

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Variation in the ability of Aspergillus flavus isolates to spread between cotton boll locules was previously shown to be at least partially related to variation in the production of a specific polygalacturonase (pectinase P2C). To determine if nonpectolytic hydrolase differences between low- and high-virulence isolates exist and, thus, could also potentially contribute to virulence differences, the present investigation was undertaken. Two A. flavus isolates, AF12 with low virulence and lacking pectinase P2C and AF13 with high virulence and producing pectinase P2C, were compared for production of nonpectolytic hydrolases after growth in 10% potato dextrose broth. Activity of amylases, cellulases, xylanases, and proteases was quantified using the radial diffusion/cup plate technique followed by differential staining. Culture filtrates also were subjected to native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Both isolates produced amylases, proteases, and xylanases, whereas cellulases were not detected for either. AF13 produced more amylase than AF12, and this difference was supported by amylase isoform differences between isolates on native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis gels. AF13 also produced more protease than AF12; however, isoform differences between isolates were inconclusive. These variations in other hydrolytic activities (besides pectinases) may contribute to virulence differences in cotton bolls between AF12 and AF13.


Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Southern Regional Research Center, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, New Orleans, Louisiana 70179, USA 2: Department of Plant Pathology, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70803, USA

Publication date: March 1, 2001

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