Sugarcane smut disease, caused by Sporisorium scitamineum is one of the most economically devastating diseases impacting sugarcane all over the world. It causes not only significant yield loss, but also leads to variety elimination due to susceptibility to disease infection. Use of serological techniques to detect smuts of Poaceae have not been commonly reported except for diseases such as the corn smut and bunt of wheat. We have attempted to detect and quantify smut pathogen colonization at the very early stages of infection using Indirect Enzyme linked Immuno-Sorbent Assay (ELISA) and Dot blot Immunoassay (DBIA) techniques. Polyclonal antibodies were raised against dikaryotic mycelia and teliospores of the S. scitamineum through injection of two female New-Zealand white rabbits. Antisera were tested using indirect (ELISA) and dot blot immunoassay (DBIA). Antisera collected after 2 weeks were slightly more reactive than antisera collected after 1 week for teliospores suspension and mycelia extracts. Antisera raised against teliospores reacted weakly than antisera raised against dikaryotic mycelium by (ELISA) test. While, there is no differences were shown between teliospores and dikaryotic mycelium in infected plant tissues by using (DBIA). In the early stages in smut pathogen development dikaryotic mycelium was present primarily in the host Therefore, the use of dikaryotic mycelium as an antigen source could result in greater specificity and sensitivity of the immunological testing system.
Key words; Sugarcane, smut, Serological diagnosis, ELISA; DBIA