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Stem-end rot in major tropical and sub-tropical fruit species

Authors:

K. O. L. C. Karunanayake,

The Open University of Sri Lanka, LK
About K. O. L. C.
The Open University of Sri Lanka, Nawala, Nugegoda
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N. K. B. Adikaram

National Institute of Fundamental Studies, Hantana Road, Kandy 20000, LK
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Abstract

Stem-end rot (SER) is one of the most destructive postharvest diseases affecting some tropical and sub-tropical fruits. The disease is caused by several fungal pathogens, including Botryosphaeriaceae species. In mango, Dothiorella dominicana, D. mangiferae, Lasiodiplodia theobromae, Phomopsis mangiferae, Cytosphaera mangiferae, Pestalotiopsis sp. endophytically colonize the inflorescence in the orchard or field. Fungi may occur endophytically in the stem tissue of the trees prior to inflorescence emergence. During the endophytic stage, the fungi colonize the phloem and xylem at stem-end and, after fruit ripening, some fungi become necrotrophic and colonize the fruit pulp causing SER. The SER pathogens in other fruit species, including ripe avocado or papaya, are not known to undergo an endophytic phase. Stem-end rot is a disease that is difficult to control. Preharvest cultural practices and selection of resistant varieties are beneficial to reduce field infections. Studies have shown that numerous control options, involving cultural, chemical (fungicides, essential oils) and biological approaches, are available to manage SER through either direct inhibition of fungi or induction of host defenses. These may be used individually or integrated manner. The most common and effective practice for controlling the SER is pre- and postharvest application of synthetic fungicides. With the new tools that are currently available, and expected to emerge, there is a possibility of a better understanding the host–pathogen or host-microbiota interactions within the stem-end region, leading to newer technologies as alternatives to toxic synthetic fungicides for the management of SER in fruits.
How to Cite: Karunanayake, K. O. L. C., & Adikaram, N. K. B. (2020). Stem-end rot in major tropical and sub-tropical fruit species. Ceylon Journal of Science, 49(5), 327–336. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/cjs.v49i5.7800
Published on 16 Nov 2020.
Peer Reviewed

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