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Morphological and molecular identification of fungi for their association with postharvest fruit rots in some selected citrus species

Authors:

A. Jayasekara,

University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya, LK
About A.
Department of Plant and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Science
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A. Daranagama ,

University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya, LK
About A.
Department of Plant and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Science
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T. D. Kodituwakku,

University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya, LK
About T. D.
Department of Plant and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Science
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K. Abeywickrama

University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya, LK
About K.
Department of Plant and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Science
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Abstract

Purpose: The availability of fresh Citrus fruits is limited by their susceptibility to invasion by microbial pathogens which leads to cause serious postharvest losses. The present study was carried out to isolate and morphologically identify postharvest fungal associations from selected Citrus fruit species (C. sinensis, C. limon, C. crenatifolia and C. medica) and to confirm their identity by molecular characterization.

 

Research method: Postharvest fungal associations of selected Citrus fruit species were isolated, and identification was done based on morphological characteristics. Confirmation of fungal associations was done through phylogenetic analysis of newly generated ITS sequencing data. Further, frequency of occurrence of each fungal isolate was calculated in three different districts in Sri Lanka.

 

Findings: From the morphological and molecular identification, Collectrichum fructicola, Collectrichum gloeosporioides, Lasiodiplodia theobromae, Aspergillus niger and Pestalotiopsis sp. were recorded from C. sinensis. Neofusicoccum parvum, Collectrichum gigasporium and Aspergillus clavatus were isolated from C. crenatifolia. Further, Lasiodiplodia theobromae and L. pseudotheobromae were the only fungal association isolated from C. limon and C. medica fruit species, respectively. It is worthwhile noting that this is the first report of association of the C. gigasporium and Pestalotiopsis sp. from Citrus fruits in Sri Lanka.

 

Research limitations: Since this research was mainly focused on the isolation and identification of the potential fungal associations, pathogenicity evaluation could not be carried out.

 

Originality/Value: Findings of potential disease causative agents in citrus will be valuable for agriculture sector, to adopt and practice effective strategies to minimize postharvest losses of citrus fruits.

How to Cite: Jayasekara, A., Daranagama, A., Kodituwakku, T.D. and Abeywickrama, K., 2022. Morphological and molecular identification of fungi for their association with postharvest fruit rots in some selected citrus species. Journal of Agricultural Sciences – Sri Lanka, 17(1), pp.79–93. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jas.v17i1.9612
Published on 04 Jan 2022.
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