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Epichloë endophyte infection rates and alkaloid content in commercially available grass seed mixtures in Europe

Please always quote using this URN: urn:nbn:de:bvb:20-opus-203323
  • Fungal endophytes of the genus Epichloë live symbiotically in cool season grass species and can produce alkaloids toxic to insects and vertebrates, yet reports of intoxication of grazing animals have been rare in Europe in contrast to overseas. However, due to the beneficial resistance traits observed in Epichloë infected grasses, the inclusion of Epichloë in seed mixtures might become increasingly advantageous. Despite the toxicity of fungal alkaloids, European seed mixtures are rarely tested for Epichloë infection and their infection statusFungal endophytes of the genus Epichloë live symbiotically in cool season grass species and can produce alkaloids toxic to insects and vertebrates, yet reports of intoxication of grazing animals have been rare in Europe in contrast to overseas. However, due to the beneficial resistance traits observed in Epichloë infected grasses, the inclusion of Epichloë in seed mixtures might become increasingly advantageous. Despite the toxicity of fungal alkaloids, European seed mixtures are rarely tested for Epichloë infection and their infection status is unknown for consumers. In this study, we tested 24 commercially available seed mixtures for their infection rates with Epichloë endophytes and measured the concentrations of the alkaloids ergovaline, lolitrem B, paxilline, and peramine. We detected Epichloë infections in six seed mixtures, and four contained vertebrate and insect toxic alkaloids typical for Epichloë festucae var. lolii infecting Lolium perenne. As Epichloë infected seed mixtures can harm livestock, when infected grasses become dominant in the seeded grasslands, we recommend seed producers to test and communicate Epichloë infection status or avoiding Epichloë infected seed mixtures.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author: Jochen Krauss, Veronika Vikuk, Carolyn A. Young, Markus Krischke, Martin J. Mueller, Katja Baerenfaller
URN:urn:nbn:de:bvb:20-opus-203323
Document Type:Journal article
Faculties:Fakultät für Biologie / Julius-von-Sachs-Institut für Biowissenschaften
Fakultät für Biologie / Theodor-Boveri-Institut für Biowissenschaften
Language:English
Parent Title (English):Microorganisms
ISSN:2076-2607
Year of Completion:2020
Volume:8
Issue:4
Pagenumber:498
Source:Microorganisms 2020, 8(4), 498; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8040498
DOI:https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8040498
Dewey Decimal Classification:5 Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik / 57 Biowissenschaften; Biologie / 579 Mikroorganismen, Pilze, Algen
Tag:Epichloë spp.; Lolium perenne; alkaloids; cool-season grass species; grass endophytes; horses; infection rates; livestock; perennial ryegrass; toxicity
Release Date:2020/10/12
Date of first Publication:2020/03/31
Licence (German):License LogoCC BY: Creative-Commons-Lizenz: Namensnennung 4.0 International