Yam anthracnose in the English-speaking islands of the Eastern Caribbean: Successes and research advances in disease management. (53)

Frank D. Mc Donald, Angela T. Alleyne, Leonard W. O'garro, Ashton J. Delauney


Anthracnose (Colletotrichum gloeosporioides) has been the single most important factor responsible for the decline of 'White Lisbon' a white yam cultivar (Dioscorea alata) from the beginning of the 1980s in Barbados and the English-speaking Caribbean. The outstanding success achieved, to date, in the management of the disease is the selection of tolerant cultivars introduced from Guadeloupe, Puerto Rico, and Costa Rica. Five such cultivars have shown superiority to all others including the two cultivars indigenous to Barbados, 'Oriental' and 'Welch'. The five superior clones are 'Plimbite', 'Kinabayo', 'Belep', 'Pacala', and 'Gunung'. The challenge, however, may lie in the application of biotechnology techniques to study the pathogen (C. gloeosporioides) as well as the host White Lisbon (the preferred cultivar) so as to better understand the host and (or) pathogen relationships and the genetics of the pathogen and host at the molecular level.


Anthracnose; White Lisbon; Tolerant cultivars; Biotechnology

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