MOLECULAR IDENTIFICATION OF ANGUINA FUNESTA THE CAUSAL AGENT OF BARLEY EAR COCKLE DISEASE IN NINEVEH PROVINCE – IRAQ
At the end of April 2020, a field survey was conducted in the barley fields of Nineveh province to detect barley Ear cockle disease caused by infection with nematode Anguina funesta and to estimate the percentages of infection with this disease, the percentage was 8,2,5,1,10% for each of Hamdaniya,Bashiqa, Bartella, Al-Boir and Khirbet Malak,. respectively. The infected samples were collected for several varieties of barley after obtaining the adult stages at the beginning of the formaation of the ears and comparing their morphological characteristics with those close up to them such as Anguina spp. Pathogenicity of the nematodes in barley plants was also confirmed by Koch’s postulates. Molecular identification of Anguina isolates was done by amplifying the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of the conserved ribosomal DNA using primers ITS1 and ITS4. All the ITS sequences were compared for gaps and similarity sequences of the nematodes were homologous to those of A. funesta. isolates in the GenBank database with a similarity percentage of 95%, thereby confirming the identity of the causative agent of the disease. To the best of our knowledge this is the first record of A. funesta on the barley in Ninevah Governorate in Iraq. The nucleotide sequence of ITS from the Iraqi isolate has been assigned GenBank Accession No ON721332.1.
Keywords: Barley, Ear Cockle Disease, Anguina Funesta, PCR.