Antagonistic activities of needle-leaf fungal endophytes against Fusarium spp.

Ronel Brandon C. De Mesa1, Isabel Rafaela Espinosa1, Ma. Carmella Romana R. Agcaoili1, Marie Antonette T. Calderon1, Ma. Victoria B. Pangilinan1, Jewel C. De Padua2, and Thomas Edison E. dela Cruz1, 2, *

1Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science, University of Santo Tomas, España Blvd. 1008 Manila, Philippines; 2Fungal Biodiversity, Ecogenomics and Systematics (FBeS) Group, Research Center for the Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Santo Tomas, España Blvd. 1008 Manila, Philippines; *Corresponding author, email: tedelacruz@ust.edu.ph

Abstract: The use of living beneficial microbes and/ or their products to control plant pathogens can offer a safer alternative to chemical treatments. In this study, needle-leaf fungal endophytes (NLE) were isolated from symptoms-free needle-leaves of two host plants collected in Cavite and Batangas, Philippines. A total of 73 NLEs were observed from three tree samples for each of the angiosperm Casuarina equisetifolia Engl. and the gymnosperm Pinus kesiya Royle ex Gordon. These were identified as belonging to 17 morphospecies. Of these, seven NLEs, mainly isolated from C. equisetifolia, were tested for their antagonistic activities against three potential plant pathogens, Fusarium oxysporum s.l. Smith & Swingle, F. solani s.l. (Mart.) Sacc., and F. moniliforme s.l. J. Sheld. using the dual-culture method at three strategies. Our results showed NLEs inhibited F. oxysporum on contact via the preventive, eradicative, and simultaneous approaches indicating that fungal endophytes may be used as potential biocontrol agents against F. oxysporum s.l..

De Mesa RBC, Espinosa IR, Agcaoili MCRR, Calderon MAT, Pangilinan MVB, De Padua JC, dela Cruz TEE (2020) Antagonistic activities of needle-leaf fungal endophytes against Fusarium spp. MycoAsia 2020/06.