Occurrence of Telia of Phakopsora pachyrhizi on Kudzu in Texas.
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The first discovery of Asian soybean rust (ASR) caused by Phakopsora pachyrhizi H. Sydow & Sydow in the continental United States was in Louisiana in 2004 (3). In Texas, the uredial stage of this fungus was first found on kudzu (Pueraria lobata) in November 2005 and 3 months later on soybean (Glycine max) (2). The telial stage of P. pachyrhizi was first reported in the continental United States on kudzu in central Florida (1). On January 5, 2008, telia of P. pachyrhizi along with uredia were found on living kudzu leaves at two locations in Polk and Liberty counties of East Texas, where only the uredial stage had been found in September of 2007. The kudzu in both locations had died back more than 99% in January. A single telium or a cluster of telia were found along with uredinia on the abaxial leaf surface. Telia and uredinia (n = 20) were similar in size, 136.3 26.3 and 133.1 16.4 m in diameter, respectively. Telia were dark brown to black compared with tan colored uredinia. Elongated, oval-shaped teliospores (n = 15) were 18.1 1.7 m long and 10.6 1.0 m wide. A reexamination of herbarium specimens from previous ASR collections indicated that telia had been present on kudzu leaves from Liberty County collected in December of 2005 and 2006. In contrast, telia were not found on soybean leaves collected in February of 2006 and 2007 and January of 2008 from Hidalgo County in the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV), an area with a subtropical climate where ASR hosts could survive year round. Kudzu does not occur in the LRGV. Infected kudzu in East Texas can support production of telia over the winter months. However, the hosts that can be infected by basidiospores have not been identified, and so the significance of telia as a source of genetic variation is not known. To our knowledge, this is the first report of the telial stage of P. pachyrhizi in Texas. References: (1) C. L. Harmon et al. Plant Dis. 90:380, 2006. (2) T. Isakeit et al. Plant Dis. 90:971, 2006. (3) R. W. Schneider et al. Plant Dis. 89:774, 2005.
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