The effect of selected allelochemicals on germination of conidia and blastospores and mycelial growth of the entomopathogenic fungus, Paecilomyces fumosoroseus (Deuteromycotina: Hyphomycetes)

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Selected allelochemicals that protect plants from invasion by plant pathogenic fungi were investigated for their activity against the entomopathogenic fungus, Paecilomyces fumosoroseus. The alkaloids tomatine, solanine, and camptothecin; the furanocoumarin, xanthotoxin; and the phenolic, tannic acid were tested for their effects on germination of conidia and blastospores and growth of mycelia. The LC50 values (corresponding to 50% inhibition of germination) for tomatine, solanine, camptothecin, xanthotoxin and tannic acid were 51.6, 95.9, 55.9, 83.0 and 72.8 mg/l respectively. When blastospores were placed on media containing a concentration of the individual allelochemicals that inhibit germination in approximately 50% of conidia, all but blastospores on tomatine had significantly less germination than did aerial conidia. Growth rates of mycelia were slowest in the camptothecin medium, followed by those of tomatine and xanthotoxin and were not significantly different from controls in the media containing solanine and tannic acid. A multitude of biotic and abiotic factors are responsible for specificity and degree of pathogenicity of entomopathogens. The effect of crop plant chemistry on the efficacy of entomopathogens should be quantified further in order to maximize their potential when used concomitantly with resistant plant varieties.

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