Navigation Links
Getting to the root of horseradish root problems
Date:4/15/2013

URBANA Approximately 55 percent of the horseradish produced in the United States is grown in the Collinsville, Ill., area, the self-proclaimed "Horseradish Capital of the World." The product is of such high quality that Europeans import it for gourmet and industrial use. But when crop sciences professor Mohammad Babadoost first arrived at the University of Illinois in 1999, he was told that growers had been experiencing significant yield reductions due to internal discoloring and root rot.

"If the roots are discolored, they are not accepted for processing," Babadoost said.

U of I researchers have been looking at various bacteria and fungi for more than 30 years, trying to identify the agents causing the problem. In the 1980s, they isolated a fungus called Verticillium dahlia, which was linked to horseradish disease at many locations in the United States.

Babadoost, however, was not convinced that this fungus alone was responsible for all the damage.

"When I came here, I realized that it's a serious problem, and I thought it could be a complex problem rather than a single-pathogen/single-disease problem," he said.

He was right. In 2004, he and his team determined that internal discoloration of horseradish roots is due to a disease complex caused by at least three fungi: Verticillium dahlia, Verticillium longisporum, and Fusarium solani.

"But I was still not completely convinced that that was the end of the story," he said. He was seeing a lot of root rot that did not appear to be caused by the identified pathogens.

He and his graduate student, JunMyoung Yu, carried out fungal isolations from horseradish roots from commercial fields in Illinois and Wisconsin. They first identified isolates to genus; those identified as Fusarium were further identified to species based on their morphological and molecular characteristics.

They selected 11 isolates that they identified initially as Fusarium oxysporum. After further analysis, they found that six of them were actually Fusarium commune, a species that was identified in 2003.

To compare the pathogenicity of the two species, they inoculated asymptomatic horseradish roots with either F. commune or F. oxysporum and monitored root quality at monthly intervals.

They found that plants inoculated with F. oxysporum developed internal root discoloration. However, roots inoculated with F. commune had more discoloration, and 83 percent of them developed root rot by four months after inoculation. This was the first time that F. commune had been linked to horseradish disease.

Knowing the source of the disease, however, does not solve the problem. Although infected roots can be dug up, washed, and replanted, the process is labor-intensive, and the plants remain susceptible to the pathogens that remain in the soil.

Babadoost said that growers are interested in developing resistant cultivars, but doing so will not be an easy task. "I don't know if cultivars resistant to the internal root discoloration will ever be available because of the complexity of the disease," he said. "You have to go through a long process of testing against each individual pathogen and combination of pathogens to come up with a reasonably resistant cultivar."

He recommends that growers use an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach. Infected roots can be cleaned in hot water and replanted. Biocontrol agents or fungicides can be used to protect the roots from infection for 12 weeks, and it takes roughly the same amount of time for root damage to reach unacceptable levels.

"If these two techniques are combined, by the end of the season in the fall the roots are either not infected or discoloration from infection is negligible, so you can sell the roots," he said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Susan Jongeneel
sjongene@illinois.edu
217-333-3291
University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Getting under the shell of the turtle genome
2. School-based kitchen gardens are getting an A+
3. Cheating -- and getting away with it
4. Overweight pregnant women not getting proper weight-gain advice
5. Texas cotton getting a genetic tune-up
6. Getting (drugs) under your skin
7. For young birds, getting stressed out can be a good thing
8. Getting to the root -- unearthing the plant-microbe quid pro quo
9. Carbon is key for getting algae to pump out more oil
10. University of Tennessee anthropologists find American heads are getting larger
11. Scripps Florida scientists identify neurotranmitters that lead to forgetting
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/15/2016)... , June 15, 2016 ... market report titled "Gesture Recognition Market by Application Market - Global ... 2016 - 2024". According to the report, the  global ... billion in 2015 and is estimated to grow ... 48.56 billion by 2024.  Increasing application ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... , June 2, 2016 The ... has awarded the 44 million US Dollar project, for ... Embossed Vehicle Plates including Personalization, Enrolment, and IT Infrastructure ... leader in the production and implementation of Identity Management Solutions. ... January, however Decatur was selected for ...
(Date:5/20/2016)... May 20, 2016  VoiceIt is excited to ... VoicePass. By working together, VoiceIt and ... VoiceIt and VoicePass take slightly different approaches to ... both security and usability. ... this new partnership. "This marketing and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... HOUSTON , June 23, 2016 ... agreement with the Cy-Fair Sports Association to serve ... of the agreement, Houston Methodist Willowbrook will provide ... education and connectivity with association coaches, volunteers, athletes ... partner with the Cy-Fair Sports Association and to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Supplyframe, ... of the Supplyframe Design Lab . Located in Pasadena, Calif., the Design ... of how hardware projects are designed, built and brought to market. , The ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Andrew D Zelenetz ... Published recently in Oncology ... touchONCOLOGY, Andrew D Zelenetz , discusses the ... is placing an increasing burden on healthcare systems ... With the patents on many biologics expiring, interest ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... FRANCISCO , June 22, 2016  Amgen (NASDAQ: ... sponsorship of the QB3@953 life sciences incubator ... human health. The shared laboratory space at QB3@953 was ... overcome a key obstacle for many early stage organizations ... part of the sponsorship, Amgen launched two "Amgen Golden ...
Breaking Biology Technology: