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Abstract

This research was conducted to investigate the natural, quantitative composition of the most common Fusarium species directly in fields of northeastern Poland. The concentration of Fusarium spp. and grain quality traits (yield, 1,000 kernel weight, test weight, grain moisture, ergosterol content, protein content, gluten content and starch content) were compared in four wheat varieties (Mandaryna, Struna, Kandela and Arabella). Obtained results indicated a relation between grain moisture, test weight, ergosterol content, yield and fungi concentration. Protein, starch and gluten content was similar in all wheat varieties. Fusarium culmorum was the most common pathogen in Mandaryna and Struna and F. graminearum in Kandela and Arabella. Fusarium avenaceum and F. poae occurred in low amounts in all wheat varieties except Mandaryna. Fusarium oxysporum was found in comparable concentrations in Struna, Kandela and Arabella. Struna despite medium Fusarium spp. colonization possessed the most desirable grain quality compared to other varieties. We carried out real-time PCR detection of Fusarium spp. which is an efficient, cost effective and time saving method in evaluating the development of fungal diseases which are not visible in standard observations.
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