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  • 1 Slovak Academy of Sciences Institute of Botany Dúbravská cesta 14 845 23 Bratislava Slovakia
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The possible role of fusariotoxin-fusaproliferin in Fusarium disease was investigated with respect to ultrastructure responses in the cells of maize leaves. The seedlings of resistant (Lucia) and susceptible (Pavla) maize cultivars were grown on two fusaproliferin concentrations (5 and 35 µg/mL −1 ). Only the higher concentration caused appearance of visible symptoms on the leaves. Structural changes of chloroplasts such as dilatation of grana thylakoids in the mesophyll chloroplasts, thylakoid disorganization, and an increased number of osmiophilic globules (plastoglobuli) in the stroma were observed in mesophyll and bundle sheath chloroplasts of both cultivars. The higher toxin concentration sporadically induced severe damage to the outer chloroplast membrane. The extent of ultrastructure disturbances depended on toxin concentration and it was greater in the susceptible cultivar Pavla. Fusaproliferin may be involved in Fusarium pathogenesis as a virulence factor or, by enhancing activity of some other toxins that might be concomitantly present in the diseased plants.

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