A Polymerase Chain Reaction Method for Identification of Five Major Meloidogyne Species


  • T. O. Powers
  • T. S. Harris


A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method for discriminating Meloidogyne incognita, M. arenaria, M. javanica, M. hapla, and M. chitwoodi was developed. Single juveniles were ruptured in a drop of water and added directly to a PCR reaction mixture in a microcentrifuge tube. Primer annealing sites were located in the 3' portion of the mitochondrial gene coding for cytochrome oxidase subunit II and in the 16S rRNA gene. Following PCR amplification, fragments of three sizes were detected. The M. incognita and M. javanica reactions produced a 1.7-kb fragment; the M. arenaria reaction, a 1.1-kb fragment; and the M. hapla and M. chitwoodi reactions resulted in a 0.52-kb fragment. Digestion of the amplified product with restriction endonucleases allowed discrimination among species with identically sized amplification products. Dra I digestions of the 0.52-kb amplification product produced a characteristic three-banded pattern in M. chitwoodi, versus a two-banded pattern in M. hapla. Hinf I digestion of the 1.7-kb fragment produced a two-banded pattern in M. javanica, versus a three-banded pattern in M. incognita. Amplification and digestion of DNA from juveniles from single isolates of M. marylandi, M. naasi, and M. nataliei indicated that the diagnostic application of this primer set may extend to less frequently encountered Meloidogyne species. Key words: DNA, Meloidogyne arenaria, M, chitwoodi, M. hapla, M. incognita, M. javanica, nematode, polymerase chain reaction.