Azoxystrobin and propiconazole offer significant potential for rice blast (Pyricularia oryzae) management in Australia

Dolar Pak, Ming Pei You, Vincent Lanoiselet, Martin J. Barbetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Fungicides are the preferred rice blast (Pyricularia oryzae) control option by farmers. However, no fungicides are yet registered for this purpose in Australia. Hence, it is important to test the baseline sensitivity of P. oryzae isolates collected from blast-affected regions across northern Australia, which have not yet been exposed to the fungicides, as part of a resistance management strategy. Further, it is also important to investigate and compare effect of application timing of fungicides on conidial development, including germination and germ tube growth, and penetration on susceptible rice. The EC50 of a collection of fungicide-sensitive blast isolates were within the range of 0.02–2.02 and 0.06–1.91 mg L−1 for azoxystrobin and propiconazole, respectively. Azoxystrobin was shown to have greater inhibitory effect on conidial germination than propiconazole. In addition, for pre-inoculation application, only germ tubes in the presence of external nutrients continued to grow from 24 to 48 hpi. On susceptible seedlings, both fungicides completely controlled blast disease when applied the same day as inoculation. However, for pre- or post-inoculation application of fungicide, the extent of disease control was reduced, with azoxystrobin more efficacious than propiconazole. A stimulatory effect of both fungicides at low dose was observed on certain P. oryzae isolates. This is the first study to assess the baseline sensitivity of the P. oryzae population in Australia and the first to report a stimulatory effect of low azoxystrobin concentration on growth of P. oryzae. The study highlights, for the first time, the critical role of external nutrients in promoting germ tube growth under fungicide stress conditions. Lastly, it demonstrates the high degree of efficacy of the fungicides and their potential for future rice blast management in Australia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-259
Number of pages13
JournalEuropean Journal of Plant Pathology
Issue number2
Early online date27 Oct 2016
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017


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