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Potential of a Plant-Parasitic Nematode To Facilitate Internal Contamination of Tomato Plants by Salmonella

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The objective of this study was to determine whether tomato plants infested with a plant-parasitic nematode, Meloidogne incognita, can internalize Salmonella. Tomato plants (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. 'Rutgers') were grown in soil infested with M. incognita and/or inoculated with a six-serotype mixture of Salmonella enterica. M. incognita, upon wounding roots when parasitizing the tomato plant, does not result in the entry and survival of Salmonella. Analysis of roots, galls, stems, and leaves 2 and 4 weeks after inoculation of the soil failed to reveal the presence of Salmonella. Salmonella remained viable in soil for at least 4 weeks. The potential for the presence of Salmonella in the tissues of tomato fruits via root entrance facilitated by M. incognita appears to be remote.


Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: 1: Center for Food Safety and Department of Food Science and Technology, University of Georgia, 1109 Experiment Street, Griffin, Georgia 30223-1797, USA 2: Department of Plant Pathology, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 30602-7274, USA

Publication date: August 1, 2003

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