Palestine Technical University Research Journal


The overwintering modes of E. necator were studied on Palestinian vineyards, through observations on the differentiation and maturation of cleistothecia and on the occurrence of flag-shoots (deriving from overwintering mycelium) in vineyards. Field surveys were carried out in 17 vineyards for the presence of Flag shoots and cleistothecia, both forms were not observed. Genetic structure and composition of E. necator populations were investigated by application of already available SCAR (Sequence Characterized Amplified Region) primers specific for the "flag-shoot" and "ascospore" biotypes. These primers were used to evaluate the dynamics of the spatial and temporal distribution of the two biotypes, into fungal populations present in 8 vineyards, with different cultivars and spray histories, in various Palestinian districts (Hebron, Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Ramallah, Jericho, Nablus, Jenin, Tulkarm). 397 samples were analyzed by the uses of the primer pairs UnE-UnF in PCR reactions. All samples were found to be of the ascospore biotypes. This finding shows that the “flag shoot” biotype, appears soon after bud breaking and disappears later, while the “ascospore” biotype is more frequently associated to later infections and bunches damages. Such information would be helpful to understand the reasons underlying possible temporal evolution of the pathogen's populations in vineyards, and can have important implications for powdery mildew rationale control strategies.