Canadian Forest Service Publications

Use of monoclonal antibodies to detect molecules of fungal plant pathogens. 1987. Ouellette, G.B.; Benhamou, N. Can. J. Plant Pathol. 9: 167-176.

Year: 1987

Issued by: Laurentian Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 14776

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

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In recent years, several monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) have been successfully used in detecting fungal infections, in elucidating strain differentiation, as well as in evaluating the role and mode of action of fungal metabolites in host/pathogen relationships. The introduction of the hybridoma technology in plant pathology has thus provided specific and reliable information on many problems that could not be solved by means of conventional serology using polyclonal antisera. Among the increasing number of reports dealing with the use of MAbs, those concerning the production of MAbs against a 85% purified toxic glycopeptide, isolated from Ophiostoma ulmi (the Dutch elm disease agent), have contributed to a better understanding of the mode of action of toxins in this severe disease. Immunofluorescence, immunoperoxidase, and protein A-gold tests have yielded valuable data concerning the localization and the diffusion of the toxin in infected elm host tissues. MAbs were also recently produced against some proteins isolated from Ascocalyx abietina, the scleroderis canker agent of conifers. The specificity of these antibodies was assessed through immunological and immunobiochemical assays; as a possible application such antibodies are being used to localize the pathogen in host cells and to differentiate races of this pathogen. Finally, MAbs raised against a synthetic double-stranded RNA (dnRNA) were found, by ELISA, immunodot, and immunogold procedures, to specifically recognize the spatial conformation of this nucleic acid molecule. Their application in detecting mycoviruses has been successfully achieved. It is obvious that these antibodies will acquire a great applicability not only in plant pathology but also in invertebrate and in vertebrate pathology.