Effect of Conditioning Treatments on the Survival of Radopholus similis at High Temperatures


  • A. Arcinas
  • B. S. Sipes
  • A. H. Hara
  • M. M. C. Tsang


anthurium, burrowing nematode, conditioning, hot water, quarantine, radopholus similis, survival, thermotolerance


Heat treatments are an environmentally safe method for eliminating quarantine pests from tropical foliage. Conditioning heat treatments can induce thermotolerance against subsequent and otherwise phytotoxic temperatures in tropical foliage, allowing heat treatments to be even more effective. However, if thermotolerance is also induced in nematodes of quarantine significance like Radopholus similis, heat treatments would be rendered ineffective. A lethal thermal death point (LT[sub9][sub9][sub.][sub9]) was established for R. similis by recording mortality at 25 (control temperature), 43°C, 45°C, 47°C, or 49°C after a 0, 1-, 2-, 4-, 6-, 8-, 10-, 12-, or 15-minute exposure. In a second experiment, nematodes were conditioned at 35, 40, or 45°C for 0, 15, 30, 60, 120, and 180 minutes, allowed to rest for 3 hours, and then challenged at 47°C for 5 minutes. No nematodes survived the challenge heat treatment; rather, nematode mortality was hastened by the conditioning treatment itself. In a third experiment, R. similis inside anthurium roots were conditioned at 25°C or 40°C for 15 minutes and then treated at 45°C for up to 8 minutes. Mortality of conditioned and unconditioned nematodes was similar (P 0.1). Conditioning treatments increase plant thermotolerance but do not induce thermotolerance in R. similis. Heat treatments have promise as disinfection protocols for quarantines.