Israel and its vicinity constitute a center of diversity of domesticated wheat species (Triticum aestivum and T. durum) and their sympatrically growing wild relatives, including wild emmer wheat (T. dicoccoides). We investigated differentiation within the forma specialis of their obligate powdery mildew pathogen, Blumeria graminis f. sp. tritici. A total of 61 B. graminis f. sp. tritici isolates were collected from the three host species in four geographic regions of Israel. Genetic relatedness of the isolates was characterized using both virulence patterns on 38 wheat lines (including 21 resistance gene differentials) and presumptively neutral molecular markers (simple-sequence repeats and single-nucleotide polymorphisms). All isolates were virulent on at least some genotypes of all three wheat species tested. All assays divided the B. graminis f. sp. tritici collection into two distinct groups, those from domesticated hosts and those from wild emmer wheat. One-way migration was detected from the domestic wheat B. graminis f. sp. tritici population to the wild emmer B. graminis f. sp. tritici population at a rate of five to six migrants per generation. This gene flow may help explain the overlap between the distinct domestic and wild B. graminis f. sp. tritici groups. Overall, B. graminis f. sp. tritici is significantly differentiated into wild-emmer and domesticated-wheat populations, although the results do not support the existence of a separate f. sp. dicocci.
- Triticum turgidum subsp. dicoccoides
- Virulence analysis tool
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Agronomy and Crop Science
- Plant Science