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A total of 129 wheat cultivars collected from local breeders in four ecological regions in China was evaluated for Fusarium head blight resistance after natural infection under epidemic conditions. The disease index was scored and seven toxins concentrations were determined by UPLC-MS/MS. The disease index ranged from 6.3 to 80.9% and a strong correlation was found between the regions from which the cultivars originate and disease index. The middle and lower reaches of Yangtze River Region showed the highest disease resistance, followed by the upper reaches of the Yangtze River Region. FHB resistance of cultivars from northern and southern Huanghuai Region was lowest and all cultivars in these regions are highly or moderately susceptible. Disease index was significantly correlated with toxin accumulation on nation scale, but no clear correlation was found within most ecological regions. The toxin accumulation was also not well correlated with resistant levels. As the incidence of FHB has increased dramatically over the last decade, improved FHB resistance in cultivars is urgently needed. We recommend that besides scoring for disease index also mycotoxin accumulation in cultivars is incorporated in breeding procedures and the evaluation of cultivars.
- Disease index
- Fusarium head blight
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