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Studies of Cryphonectria parasitica (MURR.) BARR subpopulations on Quercus petraea in Ukraine
Published October 30, 2011

Chryphonectria parasitica (Murr.) Barr, the casual agent of chestnut blight disease, which is one of the most important fungal pathogens of chestnut (Castanea sativa). The disease seriously affected the chestnut in Northern-America and in Europe as well. It is important to mention that the pathogen does not only infect the chestnut but oak spec...ies (Quercus spp.) also. In the Carpathian-Basin, the chestnut is endemic in the Mecsek mountains, in Zala, in Somogy counties but it also can be found in the Danube-Bend. In the Carpathian-Basin (outside Hungary) the chestnut is found in Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania. In our study bark samples infected by Cryphonectria parasitica were collected from Bobovyshche, Serednje and Rostovjatica (Ukraine). The rate of infected chestnut tree were higher than 90% around Bobovyshche and beside chestnut, the symptoms were detected on oak trees as well. We collected bark samples from chestnut and oak as well and then we isolated the pathogen Cryphonectria parasitica in the lab of University of Debrecen. Symptomatological observations, laboratory examinations on fungus morphology, as well as comparisons of ITS sequency homology were made and approved that the causal agent of new disease was Cryphonectria parasitica. Our results proved that the Cryphonectria. parasitica infects oak trees beside chestnut in the Carpathian-Basin. Further studies are needed to determine the VCG (Vegatative Compatibility Group) group of the Cryphonectria parasitica found on oak trees. 

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75 years of the chestnut blight fungus Cryphonectria parasitica (Murr.) Barr in Europe
Published November 2, 2014

...5); font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; text-decoration-style: initial; text-decoration-color: initial;">The chestnut blight fungus Cryphonectria parasitica is a native pathogen in East Asia and has been introduced into North America and Europe. Historical records and population genetic studies revealed at least three major introduction events from Asia into Europe.

Nowadays, chestnut blight is present in almost the entire distribution range of European chestnut, i.e. from the Iberian Peninsula to the Caucasus. The C. parasitica population in most countries has been studied in respect to the diversity of vegetative compatibility (vc) types and the occurrence of hypovirulence. The vc type diversity of the different populations varied considerably. Typically, a high diversity of vc types has been found in areas with a long history of chestnut blight and where sexual recombination between divergent genotypes commonly has occurred. On the other hand, newly established populations often showed a low diversity with only one, or a few vc types present.

Hypovirulence, i.e. the occurrence of C. parasitica isolates infected by Cryphonectria hypovirus 1 has been found widespread in Europe. Natural dissemination and active biological control applications have lead to a high prevalence of the hypovirus and to the recovery of many chestnut stands. Virulent cankers became hypovirus-infected within a short time and ceased expansion. There is concern that the diversity of vegetative compatibility types could increase in Europe through sexual reproduction between C. parasitica genotypes originating from different introductions. A higher level of vegetative incompatibility would not only hamper hypovirus spread within a population but could also select for lower virulence in CHV-1 and subsequently lead to an erosion of biological control. Recent studies, however, indicate that the vc type barriers are not so restrictive than previously assumed and that so far no evidence for an erosion of biological control system in high diversity populations can be observed.

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The role of production site isolation in the plant health situation of sweet chestnut (Castanea sativa)
Published May 16, 2017

The most destructive pathogen for the European chestnut is the blight fungus Cryphonectria parasitica (Murr.) Barr. The spread of the fungus was very fast in Europe within a few decades in the second half of the past century. During the tree-health checking in the chestnut and
walnut plantation in Romania, Hargita county, next to Homoródkar...ácsonyfalva village, we especially concentraded on the signs of blight disease occurrence. The grove is laying on a western slope, under a pine forest. This favourable geographical space protects it not only from pathogen attacts, but it has a special, mild microclimate for nut and chestnut trees. The European chestnut could be a valuable member of local forests, opening a new perspective under conditions of climate changes.

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Chestnut tree: an appropriate choich for rural developement in Europe (review)
Published February 18, 2016

In chestnut plantations or in associations many pathogens and pests can be found. They are causing more than a hundred year problem in chestnut protection, for example the blight fungus Cryphonectria parasitica. Lot of breeders hybridized the Castanea sativa and Castanea dentata with the tolerant asian species. Nowadays the presence of kuriphilus seems to be the main risk. However, there are more and more chestnut plantations in Europe because of the extensive growth of needs. The food industry produces many products from chestnut, but the wood industry also use it more and more. In most of European countries the chestnut stands represent landscape aesthetics and touristic value, but probably the number of farmers inquiring the plantation will be increase in Hungary.

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Effect of the media on morphology of Cryphonectria parasitica (Murr.) Barr isolates and their Vegetative Compatibility Groups
Published June 2, 2015

The most dangerous pathogen for the European and American chestnuts is the blight fungus Cryphonectria parasitica (Murrill) Barr. Short after its introduction a big number of chestnut trees were destroyed on the infested area. The control could be really complicated, because of the numerous vegetative compatibility groups of the fungus. There i...s a type that carries a mycovirus viz. hypovirus in the cytoplasm. We are able to control effectively this pathogen by using mycovirus-carrying strains (called hypovirulent fungal strains also). In laboratory it is easy to multiply the virulent and the hypovirulent strains of the fungus but do not easy to differentiate colonies visually on simple PDA medium. During our research, we tested different types of media, based on potato and chestnut bark extract respectively. It was observed that on potato medium the virulent strains produce more orange pigments. So it is more easy to differentiate virulent or hypovirulent isolates of chestnut blight fungus based on colony colour and morphology.

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Laboratory diagnoses of the isolates of chestnut blight disease fungus Cryphonectria parasitica (MURR. BARR)
Published November 10, 2010

Chryphonectria parasitica, the casual agent of chestnut blight, is one of the most important fungal pathogens of chestnut (Castanea spp.) in Europe and Hungary. In this study, we analyzed the ITS region of five Cryphonectria parasitica strains isolated from different location of Hungary. The differences among the Cryphonectria parasitica were not insignificant because only two sites were considered as informative for the parsimony analysis. As the differences among geographically different isolates were insignificant, we mean that the evolutionary distance by ITS sequences within Hungarian Cryphonectria parasitica isolates is too small to get well based consequences for the phylogenetic relationships.

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Biological control of sweet chestnut on Pécsbánya, Hungary
Published June 30, 2018

The supervision of plant hygiene of sweet chestnut grove on Pécsbánya (South Hungary) started more than four years ago. Hypovirulent strains were applied as a biological process to control Cryphonectria parasitica fungus which causes the chestnut blight disease. By now the performed interventions have shown obviou...s results, the vitality of the trees has greatly improved, the amount of harvested nuts is increasing, and the hypovirulent strain has been spreading within the area. During plant health inspection the galls of chestnut gall wasp (Dryocosmus kuriphilus) was found in the year of 2015, which is the obvious symptom of new occurrence of the pest. The pest was eradicated by destroy galls, which allows taking out of consideration the damage by now in this area.

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Molecular studies on Cryphonectria parasitica isolates from Carpathian-basin
Published October 30, 2011

Chryphonectria parasitica, the casual agent of chestnut blight, is one of the most important fungal pathogens of chestnut (Castanea spp.) in Europe and Hungary. In this study we analyzed the diversity of 14 Cryphonectria parasitica strains isolated from different location of Carpathian-Basin. For the analyses we used the partial sequences of th...e translation elongation coding gene, tef1. Our results showed that the tef1 gene, contrary to other fungal species, is not suitable for the molecular analyses of C. parasitica. In the future, for the molecular studies of C. parasitica, we need to use other molecular markers like microsatellites.

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The specification of the growing temperature on PDA of chestnut blight pathogen (Cryphonectria parasitica (Murr.) Barr) to optimize timing for biocontrol treatments by hypovirulent strains
Published June 14, 2017

The most destructive pathogen for the European chestnut trees is the blight fungus Cryphonectria parasitica (Murr.) Barr. The biological control is the only effective possibility to apply in situ biocontrol by hypovirulent strains against compatible virulent (wild) fungus strains. The infested bark tissues can inoculate by drilling holes surrou...nding and putting into agar discs interwoven by the appropriate vegetative compatible group (VCG) hypovirulent fungus strains. This latest can pass those virus-like particles (VLPs) by parasexual contact (called hypha-anastomosis)which responsible to hypovirulence. A laboratory experiment was made to find the optimal times to carry out the treatments. The intensity of growth of fungal colonies were analysed on different temperatures. The growth of the fungus on low temperature were rather slow,according to our expectations. On higher temperature the colony progress were the same as on the optimal 20–25 °C. These observations and the environment determine the date of the field applications under Hungarian weather conditions. It means the optimal treatment periods can be May or end of September to middle October in Hungary.

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