Aspergillus flavus is a fungal plant pathogen with diverse plant hosts including cotton, peanuts, maize, almond, and pistachio. During infection by A. flavus, crops are frequently contaminated with aflatoxins, highly carcinogenic mycotoxins. A. flavus populations are composed of numerous vegetative compatibility groups (VCGs), however not all VCGs produce aflatoxin. Crosses between A. flavus VCGs with different mating type loci have been induced in laboratory studies. We have developed a set of 24 microsatellite markers for A. flavus from across the eight chromosomes to investigate genetic diversity, reproductive mode and population structure. We examined the genetic structure of A. flavus populations, including a study of YV36, the VCG to which the biocontrol fungus AF36 belongs. Results from these studies demonstrate that microsatallite markers are useful for population genetic studies of A. flavus. The extent to which hypotheses of random mating among VCGs of MAT1-1 and MAT1-2 is supported by these studies will be discussed.
Full conference title:
26th Fungal Genetics Conference
- Fungal Genetics Conference 26th (2005)