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International Parasitic Plant Society

Welcome to the homepage of the International Parasitic Plant Society (IPPS). The IPPS is dedicated to advancing scientific research on parasitic plants. Our goals include increasing the understanding of these amazing plants, providing a platform for exchange among and beyond the scientific community as well as helping to decrease the crop damage inflicted by weedy parasitic plants.

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The IPPS organises an online monthly-seminar series accessible to members and their students. Want to become an IPPS member? See Membership info 

   
6-Oct-21 Thomas Spallek (University of Hohenheim) – Signaling between Phtheirospermum and Arabidopsis
  Immaculate Mwangangi (University of Greenwich) – Enhancing sorghum post-attachment resistance against Striga by improved host nutrition
3-Nov-21 Salim Al-Babili (King Abdullah University) – Harnessing hormones and signaling molecules for combating Striga
  Stephane Munos (INRA, France) – tba
1-Dec-21 Kateřina Knotková (Masaryk University, Czech Republic) – Interactions between parasitic plants and invasive hosts: the experimental evidence
  Emily Bellis (Arkansas State University) – Evolution of parasitic plant-host interactions from gene to continent scales

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Most Recent ‘Parasitic Plant’ Publications

in Google Scholar

  1. [PDF][PDF] Инвазионные виды растений и меры борьбы с ними в насаждениях клюквы крупноплодной в Беларуси ЕВ Спиридович, АБ Власова… - … Scientific and Practical …, 2021 - hbc.bas-net.by Wednesday 13 October 2021 … В штате Массачусетс, помимо этих сорняков, в качестве крайне вредоносных засорителей насаждений клюквы отмечены виды Cuscuta gronovii Willd. и Toxicodendron radicans (L.) Kuntze [3], а в штате Нью-Джерси экономический ущерб причиняют …
  2. Effects of root hemiparasite Escobedia grandiflora (Orobanchaceae) on southern Brazilian grasslands: diversity, composition, and functional groups E Cardona Medina, RB Sühs… - Journal of Vegetation … - Wiley Online Library Friday 15 October 2021 … In general, the impact varies, depending on the type of parasitic plant and the host range species it prefers. Two types are generally recognized: holoparasites and hemiparasites (Heide-Jørgensen, 2013). Holoparasites do not have photosynthetic activity and …
  3. Genetic control of broomrape in sunflower S Cvejić, S Jocić, M Jocković, B Dedić… - Zbornik rezimea, 11 …, 2021 - fiver.ifvcns.rs Friday 15 October 2021 Broomrape (Orobanche cumana Wallr.) is a major biotic constraint in sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) production in Europe and Asia. It produces a large number of small seeds that are easily disseminated, leading to the build-up of O. cumana populations, and of …
  4. Vilina kosica: stari problem traži nova rešenja M Sarić-Krsmanović, G Malidža, D Božić… - Zbornik rezimea, 11 …, 2021 - fiver.ifvcns.rs Friday 15 October 2021 … i Cuscuta epythimum L. Ove dve vrste se po načinu vezivanja za biljku domaćina razlikuju i to utiče na izbor mera njihovog suzbijanja, pa je pre svega, potrebno determinisati koja vrsta je prisutna i tome prilagoditi način suzbijanja. Imajući u vidu značaj viline …
  5. [HTML][HTML] Exogenous miRNAs induce post-transcriptional gene silencing in plants F Betti, MJ Ladera-Carmona, DA Weits, G Ferri… - Nature Plants, 2021 - nature.com Thursday 14 October 2021 … Dodders (Cuscuta spp.), an obligate parasitic plant, uses haustoria to obtain water and nutrients from its host plant. Cuscuta campestris haustoria accumulate high levels of many 22-nucleotide miRNAs targeting Arabidopsis thaliana messenger RNAs during …
  6. Striga gesnerioides (Willd.) Vatke infestation and distribution as affected by soil properties and varieties at the plot and landscape scales in cowpea‐based cropping … AS Sadda, O Malam Issa, NS Jangorzo, AA Saïdou… - Weed … - Wiley Online Library Wednesday 13 October 2021 Striga is among the most noxious parasitic plant genera causing yield losses to staple crops in the semiarid and subhumid areas of Africa and Asia. Understanding the factors that affect the current distribution of Striga infestation is critical for developing …
  7. … ‐scale Gastrodia elata genome and large‐scale comparative genomic analysis indicate convergent evolution by gene loss in mycoheterotrophic and parasitic plants Y Xu, Y Lei, Z Su, M Zhao, J Zhang, G Shen… - The Plant … - Wiley Online Library Wednesday 13 October 2021 Mycoheterotrophic and parasitic plants are heterotrophic and respectively parasitize on fungi and plants to obtain nutrients. Large‐scale comparative genomics has not been conducted among mycoheterotrophic or parasitic plants or between these two …
  8. Фітосанітарні ризики поширення та розмноження карантинних бур'янів, контроль їх чисельності в умовах Сумської області України АО Бурдуланюк, ВІ Татаринова, ТО Рожкова… - 2021 - repo.snau.edu.ua Tuesday 12 October 2021 … Паразитичні рослини роду Cuscuta або взагалі не мають хлорофілу, або містять його лише у невеликій кількості і зазвичай … Effect of Cuscuta campestris parasitism on the physiological and anatomical changes in untreated and herbicide-treated sugar beet…
  9. [HTML][HTML] ФІТОСАНІТАРНІ РИЗИКИ ПОШИРЕННЯ ТА РОЗМНОЖЕННЯ КАРАНТИННИХ БУР'ЯНІВ, КОНТРОЛЬ ЇХ ЧИСЕЛЬНОСТІ В УМОВАХ СУМСЬКОЇ … AO Burdulanyuk, VI Tatarynova… - Bulletin of Sumy …, 2021 - snaubulletin.com.ua Tuesday 12 October 2021 … Vrbnicanin Response of alfalfa and sugar beet to field dodder (Cuscuta campestris Yunck.) parasitism: a physiological and … Effect of Cuscuta campestris parasitism on the physiological and anatomical changes in untreated and herbicide-treated sugar beet…
  10. [PDF][PDF] COMPARATIVE IN VITRO BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY ANALYSIS OF CUSCUTA REFLEXA ROXB. AND C. CAMPESTRIS YUNCKER. MUHAMMAD EJAZ UL … M EJAZ, I DAR - researchgate.net Tuesday 05 October 2021 Cuscuta reflexa Roxb. and C. campestris Yuncker are widely used as medicinal plants in different areas of Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Keeping in view of their local uses, antibacterial, antioxidant and phytochemical investigations were carried out in …
  11. [PDF][PDF] Evaluation of the Effects of Selected Plant Concentrates on the Growth of a Parasitic Plant; Field Dodder (Cuscuta campestris) and Duranta erecta BO Omondi, SM Amasongole - researchgate.net Saturday 09 October 2021 Aims: To determine effect of selected plant concentrates on the growth of field dodder (Cuscuta campestris). Study Design: A factorial experimental design; using four level extract application from blue gum, cypress, napier grass and distilled water as the control …
  12. Diversity and Cross Infestation AbilitiesAmong Different Striga hermonthica (Del.) Benth, Populations in the Sudan RAMA Ali - khartoumspace.uofk.edu Saturday 02 October 2021 dc. description. abstract Study was conducted to investigate the physiological, histological and genetic variability within Striga hermonthica populations collected from under sorghum, millet and maize. In this study physiological variability within populations …
  13. Fine Mapping of Quantitative Trait Loci (QTLs) Associated with Striga Resistance using Molecular Markers and Introgression of resistance genes into Sorghum … A Rasha Ali Mohammed Ahmed - khartoumspace.uofk.edu Friday 01 October 2021 dc. description. abstract Witchweed (Striga sp.), is a devastating parasitic weed in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Asia. It's control is difficult and can only be achieved through integrated management strategies, that depend mainly on host plant resistance …
  14. Strigolactones. Methods and Protocols. C Prandi, F Cardinale - 2021 - iris.unito.it Saturday 09 October 2021  … Chapters guide readers through wet-lab paths, issues around stability, protocols to evaluate SL activity, effects towards soil inhabitants such as parasitic plants, mycorrhizal and non-mycorrhizal fungi, nodulating bacteria, and protocols to assess effects on plant development …
  15. [PDF][PDF] Field Evaluation of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi in the Management of Orobanche: A Parasitic Weed in Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) A Waratadar, PJ Nirmalnath, PS Matiwade, V Navi - researchgate.net Saturday 09 October 2021 An investigation was carried out to evaluate the methods of application of AMF cultures in the management of Orobanche viz., planting of pre colonized tobacco seedling; soil application and the combination of both. The experiment was carried out in Orobanche  …

Most Recent 'Parasitic Plant' publications

in Scopus

  1. Phytochemical screening, antiobesity, antidiabetic and antimicrobial assessments of Orobanche aegyptiaca from Palestine Nidal Jaradat, Mohammad Qadi, Iyad Ali, Fatima Hussein, Linda Issa, Doaa Rashdan, Manal Jamoos, Re’as Najem, Abdulraziq Zarour, Mohammad Arar BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies, volume 21 Thursday 21 October 2021 Background: Microbial resistance, diabetes mellitus, and obesity are global health care problems that have posed a serious threat to both human and environmental ecosystems. The goals of the present investigations are to investigate the phytoconstituents, antilipase, anti-α-amylase, and antimicrobial activity of Orobanche aegyptiaca Pers. (OA) fro... Background: Microbial resistance, diabetes mellitus, and obesity are global health care problems that have posed a serious threat to both human and environmental ecosystems. The goals of the present investigations are to investigate the phytoconstituents, antilipase, anti-α-amylase, and antimicrobial activity of Orobanche aegyptiaca Pers. (OA) from Palestine. Methods: Identification of the phytoconstituents of OA plant petroleum ether, methylene chloride, chloroform, acetone, and methanol extracts were conducted using pharmacopeia’s methods, while porcine pancreatic lipase and α–amylase inhibitory activities were examined using p-nitrophenyl butyrate and 3,5-dinitro salicylic acid methods, respectively. Moreover, the antimicrobial activity was evaluated utilizing broth microdilution assay against eight bacterial and fungal strains. Results: The phytochemical screening results showed that the methanol extract of the OA plant is rich in phytochemical components, also this extract has powerful antilipase potential with an IC50 value of 19.49 ± 0.16 μg/ml comparing with the positive control (Orlistat) which has antilipase activity with IC50 value of 12.3 ± 0.35 μg/ml. Moreover, the methanol and chloroform extracts have powerful α-amylase inhibitory activity with IC50 values of 28.18 ± 0.22 and 28.18 ± 1.22 μg/ml, respectively comparing with Acarbose which has α-amylase inhibitory activity with IC50 dose of 26.3.18 ± 0.28 μg/ml. The antibacterial results showed that the methylene chloride extract exhibited the highest antibacterial activity among the other OA plant extracts with a MIC value of 0.78 mg/ml against S. aureus, while, the methylene chloride, petroleum ether, and chloroform extracts of the OA plant showed potential antifungal activity against C. albicans strains with MIC value of 0.78 mg/ml. Conclusion: The OA methanol and chloroform extracts could be excellent candidates as antilipase and anti-α-amylase bioactive materials. In addition, methylene chloride, petroleum ether, and chloroform extracts could be potential natural antimicrobial products.
  2. Grade II-anaphylaxis after subcutaneous injection of mistletoe extract Federica Casetti, David Rafei-Shamsabadi, Sabine Müller Contact Dermatitis, volume 85, pages 462-465 Thursday 21 October 2021 dc:description
  3. Assessing performance of white endosperm testers with varying resistance reactions to Striga (Striga hermonthica) for evaluating resistant maize (Zea mays) inbred lines Samson Afolabi, Abebe Menkir, Muhyideen Oyekunle, Ubale Abdullahi, Melaku Gedil, Silvestro Meseka, Wende Mengesha Plant Breeding, volume 140, pages 786-800 Thursday 21 October 2021 Identification of testers is crucial for hybrid maize breeding programme. However, limited information is available about ideal testers for characterising the combining ability of Striga resistant maize inbreds. This study was conducted to assess the relative value of three inbred testers with varying resistance reactions to Striga for determining ... Identification of testers is crucial for hybrid maize breeding programme. However, limited information is available about ideal testers for characterising the combining ability of Striga resistant maize inbreds. This study was conducted to assess the relative value of three inbred testers with varying resistance reactions to Striga for determining the combining ability of Striga resistant inbreds. Ninety testcrosses involving 30 Striga resistant inbreds and three testers were evaluated under artificial and natural Striga infestation and non-infested conditions at two locations for 2 years. Lines x tester interaction was significant (p ≤.05) for most traits, indicating differential ranking of lines by the testers. The GCA effects of testers for most traits were high, highlighting the predominance of additive gene action in controlling the overall performance of testcrosses. The resistant and tolerant testers exhibited desirable GCA effects, broader testcross performance, greater genetic variances and consistent ranking of testcrosses under both growing conditions than the susceptible tester. These testers can be successfully used for identifying superior Striga resistant inbreds to develop high yielding and resistant hybrids for commercialization.
  4. GWAS provides biological insights into mechanisms of the parasitic plant (Striga) resistance in sorghum Jacinta Kavuluko, Magdaline Kibe, Irine Sugut, Willy Kibet, Joel Masanga, Sylvia Mutinda, Mark Wamalwa, Titus Magomere, Damaris Odeny, Steven Runo BMC Plant Biology, volume 21 Wednesday 20 October 2021 Background: Sorghum yields in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are greatly reduced by parasitic plants of the genus Striga (witchweed). Vast global sorghum genetic diversity collections, as well as the availability of modern sequencing technologies, can be potentially harnessed to effectively manage the parasite. Results: We used laboratory assays – rhiz... Background: Sorghum yields in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are greatly reduced by parasitic plants of the genus Striga (witchweed). Vast global sorghum genetic diversity collections, as well as the availability of modern sequencing technologies, can be potentially harnessed to effectively manage the parasite. Results: We used laboratory assays – rhizotrons to screen a global sorghum diversity panel to identify new sources of resistance to Striga; determine mechanisms of resistance, and elucidate genetic loci underlying the resistance using genome-wide association studies (GWAS). New Striga resistant sorghum determined by the number, size and biomass of parasite attachments were identified. Resistance was by; i) mechanical barriers that blocked parasite entry, ii) elicitation of a hypersensitive reaction that interfered with parasite development, and iii) the inability of the parasite to develop vascular connections with hosts. Resistance genes underpinning the resistance corresponded with the resistance mechanisms and included pleiotropic drug resistance proteins that transport resistance molecules; xylanase inhibitors involved in cell wall fortification and hormonal regulators of resistance response, Ethylene Response Factors. Conclusions: Our findings are of fundamental importance to developing durable and broad-spectrum resistance against Striga and have far-reaching applications in many SSA countries where Striga threatens the livelihoods of millions of smallholder farmers that rely on sorghum as a food staple.
  5. CRISPR/Cas9 mediated mutagenesis of MORE AXILLARY GROWTH 1 in tomato confers resistance to root parasitic weed Phelipanche aegyptiaca Vinay Kumar Bari, Jackline Abu Nassar, Radi Aly Scientific Reports, volume 11 Tuesday 19 October 2021 Root parasitic weeds infect numerous economically important crops, affecting total yield quantity and quality. A lack of an efficient control method limits our ability to manage newly developing and more virulent races of root parasitic weeds. To control the parasite induced damage in most host crops, an innovative biotechnological approach is urge... Root parasitic weeds infect numerous economically important crops, affecting total yield quantity and quality. A lack of an efficient control method limits our ability to manage newly developing and more virulent races of root parasitic weeds. To control the parasite induced damage in most host crops, an innovative biotechnological approach is urgently required. Strigolactones (SLs) are plant hormones derived from carotenoids via a pathway involving the Carotenoid Cleavage Dioxygenase (CCD) 7, CCD8 and More Axillary Growth 1 (MAX1) genes. SLs act as branching inhibitory hormones and strictly required for the germination of root parasitic weeds. Here, we demonstrate that CRISPR/Cas9-mediated targted editing of SL biosynthetic gene MAX1, in tomato confers resistance against root parasitic weed Phelipanche aegyptiaca. We designed sgRNA to target the third exon of MAX1 in tomato plants using the CRISPR/Cas9 system. The T0 plants were edited very efficiently at the MAX1 target site without any non-specific off-target effects. Genotype analysis of T1 plants revealed that the introduced mutations were stably passed on to the next generation. Notably, MAX1-Cas9 heterozygous and homozygous T1 plants had similar morphological changes that include excessive growth of axillary bud, reduced plant height and adventitious root formation relative to wild type. Our results demonstrated that, MAX1-Cas9 mutant lines exhibit resistance against root parasitic weed P. aegyptiaca due to reduced SL (orobanchol) level. Moreover, the expression of carotenoid biosynthetic pathway gene PDS1 and total carotenoid level was altered, as compared to wild type plants. Taking into consideration, the impact of root parasitic weeds on the agricultural economy and the obstacle to prevent and eradicate them, the current study provides new aspects into the development of an efficient control method that could be used to avoid germination of root parasitic weeds.
  6. PCR-based rapid diagnostic tools for the authentication of medicinal mistletoe species Pureum Noh, Wook Jin Kim, Sungyu Yang, Goya Choi, Byeong Cheol Moon Phytomedicine, volume 91 Monday 18 October 2021 Background: Taxilli Herba (TH) and Visci Herba (VH), defined as the leaves and branches of the mistletoe species Taxillus chinensis and Viscum coloratum, respectively, are popular herbal medicines in East Asia. However, commercial TH and VH products are frequently adulterated with related inauthentic mistletoe species, posing efficacy and safety co... Background: Taxilli Herba (TH) and Visci Herba (VH), defined as the leaves and branches of the mistletoe species Taxillus chinensis and Viscum coloratum, respectively, are popular herbal medicines in East Asia. However, commercial TH and VH products are frequently adulterated with related inauthentic mistletoe species, posing efficacy and safety concerns. Accurate species identification of herbal medicinal products is a prerequisite for quality control, but traditional morphological identification methods are hampered by difficulties in discriminating among closely related species and in identifying the source materials in processed products. Purpose: This study aimed to develop sequence-characterized amplified region (SCAR) markers and a multiplex-SCAR assay for rapid and accurate identification of authentic TH and VH. Methods: The matK region was sequenced in a total of 20 samples from five mistletoe species, namely T. chinensis and V. coloratum, and three species often found in adulterated herbal medicines, T. sutchuenensis, V. articulatum, and Macrosolen tricolor. Species-specific nucleotide polymorphisms were identified and short regions (21–22 bp) containing at least two species-specific nucleotides close to the 3ʹ end were incorporated into SCAR primers that produced uniquely sized PCR amplicons for each species. The five SCAR primer sets were also combined into a multiplex-SCAR assay. Results: The SCAR primers successfully generated amplicons of the expected size for each target species even with low-DNA templates or with templates containing DNA from multiple samples. No amplification was observed in non-target species. The SCAR markers and the multiplex-SCAR assay successfully identified commercial TH and VH products that were counterfeit or adulterated in both dried and processed products. Conclusion: This is the first report to illustrate discrimination of genuine medicinal mistletoe species with DNA-based marker assays, enabling rapid and accurate species identification. The SCAR assays developed in this study will facilitate the standardization of commercial mistletoe products.
  7. Integrated small RNA, mRNA, and degradome sequencing reveals the important role of miRNAs in the interactions between parasitic plant Cuscuta australis and its host Trifolium repens Li Zhou, Qiu Wei Lu, Bei Fen Yang, Lyuben Zagorchev, Jun Min Li Scientia Horticulturae, volume 289 Sunday 17 October 2021 Cuscuta australis R.Br. is a stem parasite that obtains water and nutrients from host plants, with which it also exchanges proteins and mRNAs with host plants. Recently, a study found that novel miRNAs accumulated during C. campestris Yunk. parasitism of Arabidopsis thaliana L. However, the fate of miRNAs transferred from parasite to host plants as... Cuscuta australis R.Br. is a stem parasite that obtains water and nutrients from host plants, with which it also exchanges proteins and mRNAs with host plants. Recently, a study found that novel miRNAs accumulated during C. campestris Yunk. parasitism of Arabidopsis thaliana L. However, the fate of miRNAs transferred from parasite to host plants as well as their targets has remained unexamined. To understand the miRNA–mRNA interaction network of host Trifolium repens L. in response to C. australis parasitism, integrated mRNA, small RNA, and degradome sequencing data were analyzed. In total, 60,824 unigenes were identified by RNA-seq, of which 1,601 were differentially expressed genes (DEGs). A total of 71 known miRNAs belonging to 38 miRNA families and 65 novel miRNAs were identified from small RNA sequencing data and 8,012 target genes were predicted. Of these target genes, 129 miRNA–mRNA pairs were identified via degradome analyzes. There were also eight differentially expressed miRNAs (DEMs). DEG and DEM correlation analyzes revealed 23 pairs of differentially expressed miRNA–mRNA pairs responsive to C. australis parasitism. The most enriched pathways were plant hormone signal transduction, ribosome and plant–pathogen interaction pathways. The miRNA–mRNA pairs in host T. repens, including trr-miR393a–RPS6, trr-miR398b–TGA, trr-miR395a/g–bHLH112, trr-miR395g–GH3, and trr-miRn41–WRKY/MYB, likely play important roles in interactions between host T. repens and parasitic C. australis. These results provide valuable information on the mechanisms of parasite–host plant interactions.
  8. Correlational nutritional relationships and interactions between expansive holoparasite Orobanche laxissima and woody hosts on metal-rich soils Renata Piwowarczyk, Ireneusz Ochmian, Sabina Lachowicz, Ireneusz Kapusta, Katarzyna Malinowska, Karolina Ruraż Phytochemistry, volume 190 Sunday 17 October 2021 Plant parasitism by other plants, combined with abiotic environmental stress, offers a unique opportunity to study correlational nutritional relationships in terms of parasite–host interactions and their functional roles in nutrient cycling in ecosystems. Our study analysed the transfer of selected mineral elements, including heavy metals, from s... Plant parasitism by other plants, combined with abiotic environmental stress, offers a unique opportunity to study correlational nutritional relationships in terms of parasite–host interactions and their functional roles in nutrient cycling in ecosystems. Our study analysed the transfer of selected mineral elements, including heavy metals, from soil to different organs in hosts (Punica granatum and Fraxinus angustifolia) and from hosts to the expansive holoparasite (Orobanche laxissima) in cinnamonic soil habitats in Georgia (Caucasus). We also identified other correlated trophic and bioactive effects in the parasite–host relationship. O. laxissima was characterized by a high accumulation tendency for micro- and macroelements, such as K and Ca, and heavy metals, such as Zn, Ni, and Cd. Parasites can reduce the concentration of heavy metals in host tissues owing to this high accumulation tendency. In total, 85 compounds were identified in the examined parasite and its hosts. Despite the distinct phytochemical content of species of the infected host, the parasite produced specific metabolites with dominant phenylethanoid glycosides (PhGs), with acteoside and crenatoside being the primary dominant compounds - ca. 98% of all polyphenols. Polyphenols in parasite specimens that are correlated with Cu and Zn are antagonistic to polyphenols correlated with Fe, Pb, Cr, and Ni. The profile of polyphenols in the host species was both qualitatively and quantitatively distinct from the profile of the compounds in the parasite and between hosts (only acteoside in group PhGs was common between the parasite and Fraxinus host), which indicates the existence of a unique compound biosynthesis pathway in the parasite. Our results demonstrated that the parasite, particularly in its flowers, exhibited higher polyphenol content, antioxidative effects (ABTS-+, DPPH, and FRAP), and inhibitory effects.
  9. Identifying existing management practices in the control of Striga asiatica within rice–maize systems in mid-west Madagascar Donald Scott, Julie Diane Scholes, Meva Tahiry Randrianjafizanaka, Jean Augustin Randriamampianina, Patrice Autfray, Robert P. Freckleton Ecology and Evolution, volume 11, pages 13579-13592 Saturday 16 October 2021 Infestations by the parasitic weed genus Striga result in significant losses to cereal crop yields across sub-Saharan Africa. The problem disproportionately affects subsistence farmers who frequently lack access to novel technologies. Effective Striga management therefore requires the development of strategies utilizing existing cultural management... Infestations by the parasitic weed genus Striga result in significant losses to cereal crop yields across sub-Saharan Africa. The problem disproportionately affects subsistence farmers who frequently lack access to novel technologies. Effective Striga management therefore requires the development of strategies utilizing existing cultural management practices. We report a multiyear, landscape-scale monitoring project for Striga asiatica in the mid-west of Madagascar, undertaken over 2019–2020 with the aims of examining cultural, climatic, and edaphic factors currently driving abundance and distribution. Long-distance transects were established across the middle-west region of Madagascar, over which S. asiatica abundance in fields was estimated. Analysis of the data highlights the importance of crop variety and legumes in driving Striga density. Moreover, the dataset revealed significant effect of precipitation seasonality, mean temperature, and altitude in determining abundance. A composite management index indicated the effect of a range of cultural practices on changes in Striga abundance. The findings support the assertion that single measures are not sufficient for the effective, long-term management of Striga. Furthermore, the composite score has potential as a significant guide of integrated Striga management beyond the geographic range of this study.
  10. How to pit weeds against parasitic plants. A simulation study with Phelipanche ramosa in arable cropping systems Olivia Pointurier, Stéphanie Gibot-Leclerc, Delphine Moreau, Nathalie Colbach European Journal of Agronomy, volume 130 Saturday 16 October 2021 Branched broomrape (Phelipanche ramosa (L.) Pomel) is a parasitic plant, which causes severe yield losses in major crops worldwide. Due to its broad host range, including numerous non-parasitic weed species, the persistence of its seeds in the soil, and the poor efficiency of available management techniques, broomrape management is complex. In a pr... Branched broomrape (Phelipanche ramosa (L.) Pomel) is a parasitic plant, which causes severe yield losses in major crops worldwide. Due to its broad host range, including numerous non-parasitic weed species, the persistence of its seeds in the soil, and the poor efficiency of available management techniques, broomrape management is complex. In a previous paper, we developed a broomrape-dynamics model called PHERASYS to support the design of management strategies combining multiple techniques aiming at long-term control of broomrape. Here, the objective is to use this simulation model to (1) check the consistency of simulations vs. literature data, (2) evaluate the potential of cropping systems to manage the combination of branched broomrape and weeds, (3) investigate whether weeds can biologically regulate parasitic plants in agroecosystems. Five contrasting cropping systems including different levers known to influence broomrape dynamics were simulated with different weather series. Four simulation series were run, with or without broomrape as well as with or without weeds, to discriminate the individual effects of weeds and broomrape on crop production as well as the effect of weeds on broomrape dynamics. Simulations with PHERASYS showed that delayed sowing in combination with the use of trap and catch crops are promising for reducing broomrape infestation and yield losses in the long term. Tolerating a temporary and/or low-density weed flora in such cropping systems could improve broomrape management because spring/summer weeds could reduce broomrape seed bank by triggering broomrape germinations that would not reproduce. During cash-crop growth, weed contribution to broomrape infection would be negligible. However, these conclusions are only valid if broomrape-attaching weeds reproduce before broomrape has time to do so, which needs to be checked with field experiments for most weed species.
  11. Advances on the Visualization of the Internal Structures of the European Mistletoe: 3D Reconstruction Using Microtomography Max D. Mylo, Mara Hofmann, Alexander Delp, Ronja Scholz, Frank Walther, Thomas Speck, Olga Speck Frontiers in Plant Science, volume 12 Saturday 16 October 2021 The European mistletoe (Viscum album) is a dioecious epiphytic evergreen hemiparasite that develops an extensive endophyte enabling the absorption of water and mineral salts from the host tree, whereas the exophytic leaves are photosynthetically active. The attachment mode and host penetration are well studied, but little information is available a... The European mistletoe (Viscum album) is a dioecious epiphytic evergreen hemiparasite that develops an extensive endophyte enabling the absorption of water and mineral salts from the host tree, whereas the exophytic leaves are photosynthetically active. The attachment mode and host penetration are well studied, but little information is available about the effects of mistletoe age and sex on haustorium-host interactions. We harvested 130 plants of Viscum album ssp. album growing on host branches of Aesculus flava for morphological and anatomical investigations. Morphometric analyses of the mistletoe and the (hypertrophied) host interaction site were correlated with mistletoe age and sex. We recorded the morphology of the endophytic systems of various ages by using X-ray microtomography scans and corresponding stereomicroscopic images. For detailed anatomical studies, we examined thin stained sections of the mistletoe-host interface by light microscopy. The diameter and length of the branch hypertrophy showed a positive linear correlation with the age of the mistletoe. Correlations with their sex were only found for ratios between host branch and hypertrophy size. A female bias of about 76% was found. In a 4-year-old mistletoe, several small, almost equally sized sinkers and the connected cortical strands extend over more than 5 cm within the host branch. In older mistletoes, one main sinker was predominant and occupied an increasingly large proportion of the stem cross-section. Bands of vessels ran along the axis of the wedge-shaped haustoria and sinkers and bent sideways toward the mistletoe-host interface. At the interface, the vascular elements of the host wood changed their direction and formed vortices near the haustorium.
  12. The effect of a host on the primary metabolic profiling of cuscuta campestris’ main organs, haustoria, stem and flower Krishna Kumar, Rachel Amir Plants, volume 10 Friday 15 October 2021 Cuscuta campestris (dodder) is a stem holoparasitic plant without leaves or roots that parasitizes various types of host plants and causes damage to certain crops worldwide. This study aimed at gaining more knowledge about the effect of the hosts on the parasite’s levels of primary metabolites. To this end, metabolic profiling analyses were perfo... Cuscuta campestris (dodder) is a stem holoparasitic plant without leaves or roots that parasitizes various types of host plants and causes damage to certain crops worldwide. This study aimed at gaining more knowledge about the effect of the hosts on the parasite’s levels of primary metabolites. To this end, metabolic profiling analyses were performed on the parasite’s three main organs, haustoria, stem and flowers, which developed on three hosts, Heliotropium hirsutissimum, Polygonum equisetiforme and Amaranthus viridis. The results showed significant differences in the metabolic profiles of C. campestris that developed on the different hosts, suggesting that the parasites rely highly on the host’s metabolites. However, changes in the metabolites’ contents between the organs that developed on the same host suggest that the parasite can also self-regulate its metabolites. Flowers, for example, have significantly higher levels of most of the amino acids and sugar acids, while haustoria and stem have higher levels of several sugars and polyols. Determination of total soluble proteins and phenolic compounds showed that the same pattern is detected in the organs unrelated to the hosts. This study contributes to our knowledge about the metabolic behavior of this parasite.
  13. Untargeted metabolomics approach to discriminate mistletoe commercial products Cécile Vanhaverbeke, David Touboul, Nicolas Elie, Martine Prévost, Cécile Meunier, Sylvie Michelland, Valérie Cunin, Ling Ma, David Vermijlen, Cédric Delporte, Stéphanie Pochet, Audrey Le Gouellec, Michel Sève, Pierre Van Antwerpen, Florence Souard Scientific Reports, volume 11 Wednesday 29 September 2021 Mistletoe (Viscum album L.) is used in German-speaking European countries in the field of integrative oncology linking conventional and complementary medicine therapies to improve quality of life. Various companies sell extracts, fermented or not, for injection by subcutaneous or intra-tumoral route with a regulatory status of anthroposophic medici... Mistletoe (Viscum album L.) is used in German-speaking European countries in the field of integrative oncology linking conventional and complementary medicine therapies to improve quality of life. Various companies sell extracts, fermented or not, for injection by subcutaneous or intra-tumoral route with a regulatory status of anthroposophic medicinal products (European Medicinal Agency (EMA) assessment status). These companies as well as anthroposophical physicians argue that complex matrices composed of many molecules in mixture are necessary for activity and that the host tree of the mistletoe parasitic plant is the main determining factor for this matrix composition. The critical point is that parenteral devices of European mistletoe extracts do not have a standard chemical composition regulated by EMA quality guidelines, because they are not drugs, regulatory speaking. However, the mechanism of mistletoe’s anticancer activity and its effectiveness in treating and supporting cancer patients are not fully understood. Because of this lack of transparency and knowledge regarding the matrix chemical composition, we undertook an untargeted metabolomics study of several mistletoe extracts to explore and compare their fingerprints by LC-(HR)MS(/MS) and 1H-NMR. Unexpectedly, we showed that the composition was primarily driven by the manufacturer/preparation method rather than the different host trees. This differential composition may cause differences in immunostimulating and anti-cancer activities of the different commercially available mistletoe extracts as illustrated by structure–activity relationships based on LC–MS/MS and 1H-NMR identifications completed by docking experiments. In conclusion, in order to move towards an evidence-based medicine use of mistletoe, it is a priority to bring rigor and quality, chemically speaking.
  14. Changes in antioxidative compounds and enzymes in small-leaved linden (Tilia cordata mill.) in response to mistletoe (viscum album L.) infestation Liubov Skrypnik, Pavel Maslennikov, Pavel Feduraev, Artem Pungin, Nikolay Belov Plants, volume 10 Tuesday 28 September 2021 Mistletoe infestation leads to a decrease in the growth of woody plants, their longevity, and partial or complete drying of the top, as well as premature death. Various environmental stress factors, both abiotic and biotic, stimulate the formation of reactive oxygen species and the development of oxidative stress in plant tissues. This study aimed ... Mistletoe infestation leads to a decrease in the growth of woody plants, their longevity, and partial or complete drying of the top, as well as premature death. Various environmental stress factors, both abiotic and biotic, stimulate the formation of reactive oxygen species and the development of oxidative stress in plant tissues. This study aimed to investigate the effect of mistletoe (Viscum album L.) infestation on the response of the antioxidative defense system in leaves of small-leaved linden (Tilia cordata Mill.). Leaves from infested trees were taken from branches (i) without mistletoe, (ii) with 1–2 mistletoe bushes (low degree of infestation), and (iii) with 5–7 mistletoe bushes (high degree of infestation). The relative water content and the chlorophyll a and b contents in leaves from linden branches affected by mistletoe were significantly lower than those in leaves from non-infested trees and from host-tree branches with no mistletoe. At the same time, leaves from branches with low and high degrees of infestation had significantly higher electrolyte leakage, malondialdehyde and hydrogen peroxide content, oxidized forms of ascorbic acid (dehydroascorbic and 2,3-diketogulonic acids), and oxidized glutathione. The results of principal component analysis show that the development of oxidative stress was accompanied by an increase in proline content and in superoxide dismutase, ascorbate peroxidase, glutathione peroxidase, and glutathione reductase activity. Several biochemical parameters (proline, ascorbic acid, dehydroascorbic acid, glutathione, glutathione peroxidase, ascorbate peroxidase, and dehydroascorbate reductase) were found to be altered in leaves from host-tree branches with no mistletoe. This result indicates that the mistletoe infestation of trees not only causes local changes in the locations of hemiparasite attachment, but also affects the redox metabolism in leaves from other parts of the infested tree.
  15. Image analysis for the automatic phenotyping of Orobanche cumana tubercles on sunflower roots A. Le Ru, G. Ibarcq, M. C. Boniface, A. Baussart, S. Muños, M. Chabaud Plant Methods, volume 17 Monday 27 September 2021 Background: The parasitic plant Orobanche cumana is one of the most important threats to sunflower crops in Europe. Resistant sunflower varieties have been developed, but new O. cumana races have evolved and have overcome introgressed resistance genes, leading to the recurrent need for new resistance methods. Screening for resistance requires the p... Background: The parasitic plant Orobanche cumana is one of the most important threats to sunflower crops in Europe. Resistant sunflower varieties have been developed, but new O. cumana races have evolved and have overcome introgressed resistance genes, leading to the recurrent need for new resistance methods. Screening for resistance requires the phenotyping of thousands of sunflower plants to various O. cumana races. Most phenotyping experiments have been performed in fields at the later stage of the interaction, requiring time and space. A rapid phenotyping screening method under controlled conditions would need less space and would allow screening for resistance of many sunflower genotypes. Our study proposes a phenotyping tool for the sunflower/O. cumana interaction under controlled conditions through image analysis for broomrape tubercle analysis at early stages of the interaction. Results: We optimized the phenotyping of sunflower/O. cumana interactions by using rhizotrons (transparent Plexiglas boxes) in a growth chamber to control culture conditions and Orobanche inoculum. We used a Raspberry Pi computer with a picamera for acquiring images of inoculated sunflower roots 3 weeks post inoculation. We set up a macro using ImageJ free software for the automatic counting of the number of tubercles. This phenotyping tool was named RhizOSun. We evaluated five sunflower genotypes inoculated with two O. cumana races and showed that automatic counting of the number of tubercles using RhizOSun was highly correlated with manual time-consuming counting and could be efficiently used for screening sunflower genotypes at the tubercle stage. Conclusion: This method is rapid, accurate and low-cost. It allows rapid imaging of numerous rhizotrons over time, and it enables image tracking of all the data with time kinetics. This paves the way toward automatization of phenotyping in rhizotrons that could be used for other root phenotyping, such as symbiotic nodules on legumes.

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