Forest Pathology (2007) 37, 292-302

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J. Roux, R.N. Heath, L. Labuschagne, G.K. Nkuekam and M.J. Wingfield (2007)
Occurrence of the wattle wilt pathogen, Ceratocystis albifundus on native South African trees
Forest Pathology 37 (5), 292-302
Abstract: Ceratocystis albifundus causes the disease known as wattle wilt of non-native Acacia mearnsii trees in South Africa, Uganda and Kenya. Infection results in rapid wilt and death of susceptible trees and stem cankers on more tolerant trees. It has been suggested that C. albifundus is indigenous to southern Africa, possibly having spread from native Protea spp. to non-native A. mearnsii and A. decurrens trees. Although C. albifundus has been collected from Protea spp., these reports are based on limited records for which only aged herbarium specimens exist. During surveys of wound-infecting fungi on native tree species in South Africa, a fungus resembling C. albifundus was collected from Protea gaguedi, Acacia caffra, Burkea africana, Combretum molle, C. zeyheri, Faurea saligna, Ochna pulchra, Ozoroa paniculosa and Terminalia sericea. The identity of the fungus was confirmed as C. albifundus, using comparisons of DNA sequence data for the ITS and 5.8S gene of the rRNA operon. In pathogenicity trials, lesions were produced on C. molle and A. caffra, with some trees beginning to die at the termination of the experiment. This study represents the first report of C. albifundus from native tree species in South Africa and provides unequivocal evidence that the fungus occurs naturally on native Protea spp. The wide host range of C. albifundus, as well as its abundance on these indigenous hosts lends further support to the view that it is a native African pathogen.
(The abstract is excluded from the Creative Commons licence and has been copied with permission by the publisher.)
Link to article at publishers website
Database assignments for author(s): Jolanda Roux, Michael J. Wingfield, Gilbert Kamgan Nkuekam

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
general biology - morphology - evolution

Pest and/or beneficial records:

Beneficial Pest/Disease/Weed Crop/Product Country Quarant.

Ceratocystis albifundus Acacia (crop) Kenya
Ceratocystis albifundus Acacia (crop) Uganda
Ceratocystis albifundus Acacia (crop) South Africa
Ceratocystis albifundus Terminalia (genus) South Africa
Ceratocystis albifundus Protea (crop) South Africa