Differential Response of Thor Alfalfa to Meloidogyne chitwoodi Races and M. hapla


  • H. Mojtahedi
  • G. S. Santo
  • J. N. Pinkerton


Second-stage juveniles (J2) of races 1 and 2 of Meloidogyne chiiwoodi and M. hapla readily penetrated roots of Thor alfalfa and Columbian tomato seedlings; however, few individuals of M. chitwoodi race 1 were able to establish feeding sites and mature on alfalfa. Histopathological studies indicate that J2 of race 1 either failed to initiate feeding sites or they caused cell enlargement without typical cell wall thickening. The protoplasm of these cells coagulated, and juveniles of race 1 did not develop beyond the swollen J2 stage. A few females of race 1 fed on small giant cells and deposited a few eggs at least 20 and 30 days later than M. chitwoodi race 2 and M. hapla, respectively. Failure of race 1 to establish feeding sites was related to egression of J2 from the roots. The M. chitwoodi race 1 J2 egression from alfalfa roots was higher than egression of race 2 and M. hapla. Egression of J2 of M. chitwoodi races 1 and 2 from tomato roots was similar and higher than that of M. hapla. Thus egression plays an important role in the host-parasite relationship of M. chitwoodi and alfalfa. Key words: alfalfa, Columbia root-knot nematode, egression, histopathology, Meloidogyne chitwoodi, M. hapla, northern root-knot nematode, physiological race, resistance.