Role of chitinase and sormatin accumulation in the resistance of sorghum cultivars to grain mold. Academic Article uri icon


  • Experiments were conducted to determine the association between resistance to grain mold and the accumulations of chitinase and sormatin. Eight sorghum lines were treated at 50% bloom with Fusarium thapsinum, Curvularia lunata, a mixture of the two fungi, and a water-sprayed control. At maturity, percent disease severity, seed germination rates, and kernel weight were recorded. Chitinase and sormatin content (mg/g of dry weight) were measured in seed samples taken at 30 and 50 days after treatment (DAT). Seed chitinase content was moderately affected by sorghum line (P = 0.10) and significantly affected by the developmental stage of the kernels (P = 0.05). Cultivars Sureno, 98LB650, and 98LB723 exhibited larger negative changes in chitinase content at 50 DAT over water-sprayed control treatment at 30 DAT than the susceptible cultivars Dorado, RTx2536, and RTx430. In 2000, significant negative correlations were observed for percent disease severity and chitinase content at 30 DAT, seed germination and sormatin content at 50 DAT, and between seed germination and kernel weight. There also was a significant positive correlation between germination and chitinase content at 30 DAT. No association between disease severity and changes in chitinase content at 50 DAT was observed. Sormatin content also was significantly affected by the stage of kernel development. Sorghum cultivars inoculated with fungal pathogens responded differently as indicated by the significant sorghum line x treatment interaction for sormatin content in 2000. In both years, larger increases in sormatin content over the water-sprayed control treatments were observed on moderately susceptible to susceptible cultivars such as 98LB650, 98LB723, 98LB789, RTx430, and RTx2536 than on Sureno. Except for percent disease severity and germination, there was no significant association among all of the other parameters measured in 2001. The results of this study did not clearly demonstrate a strong association between resistance to grain mold and the accumulation of sormatin and chitinase. Thus, there is the possibility that certain moderately resistant to resistant sorghum cultivars, such as Sureno, may employ other strategies to eschew or restrict fungal invasion either before or after physiological maturity.

published proceedings

  • J Agric Food Chem

author list (cited authors)

  • Prom, L. K., Waniska, R. D., Kollo, A. I., Rooney, W. L., & Bejosano, F. P.

citation count

  • 6

complete list of authors

  • Prom, Louis K||Waniska, Ralph D||Kollo, Abdourhamane I||Rooney, William L||Bejosano, Feliciano P

publication date

  • July 2005