What is it about?

Maize lethal necrosis (MLN) disease caused by double infection of Maize chlorotic mottle virus (MCMV) and Sugarcane mosaic virus (SCMV) has become a major maize production constraint in East Africa including Ethiopia. For successful management of viral diseases, the role of alternate hosts and the extent and significance of seed transmission in wider geographical areas have to be clearly understood.The results of this study present the first comprehensive report on potential and known alternate hosts, and the level of seed transmission of the viruses causing MLN in larger maize growing geographic areas of Ethiopia.

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Why is it important?

Different species of weeds and cultivated plants identified as alternate hosts, and the seed transmissibility of MLN causing viruses (MCMV and SCMV) are epidemiologically important and maintain the virus inoculum in the absence of maize crop in the field, and support the survival of the virus for continuous infection.


I hope this article showed the occurrence of a wide range of weed and crop plants representing various families as actual and potential hosts of MLN-causing viruses and also provided clear information on the level of maize seed transmission of these viruses. The information provided by the study represents a valuable input for the development of integrated MLN management strategies.

Bayissa Regassa
Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Alternate hosts and seed transmission of maize lethal necrosis in Ethiopia, Journal of Phytopathology, February 2021, Wiley,
DOI: 10.1111/jph.12986.
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