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Cross-resistance to photosystem II inhibitors observed in target site–resistant but not in non–target site resistant common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia)

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 February 2022

Martin Laforest
Research Scientist, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu Research and Development Center, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC, Canada
Marie-Josée Simard
Research Scientist, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu Research and Development Center, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC, Canada
Sydney Meloche
Research Technician, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Harrow Research and Development Centre, Harrow, ON, Canada
Lydia Maheux
Research Technician, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu Research and Development Center, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC, Canada
François Tardif
Professor, Department of Plant Agriculture, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada
Eric Page*
Research Scientist, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Harrow Research and Development Centre, Harrow, ON, Canada
Author for correspondence: Eric Page, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Harrow Research and Development Centre, 2585 County Road 20, Harrow, ON N0R 1G0, Canada. Email:


The full spectrum of herbicide resistance in a weed can vary according to the mechanistic basis and cannot be implied from the selective pressure. Common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia L.) is an important weed species of horticultural crops that has developed resistance to linuron based on either target site– or non–target site resistance mechanisms. The objective of the study is to characterize the cross-resistance to metribuzin of linuron-selected biotypes of A. artemisiifolia with target site– and non–target site resistance and determine its genetic basis. Crosses were made between two types of linuron-resistant biotype and a linuron-susceptible biotype, and the progeny were further backcrossed with susceptible plants to the third backcross (BC3) generation to determine their responses to both herbicides compared with parental lines. The target site–based linuron-resistant biotype was cross-resistant to metribuzin, and resistance to both herbicides was maintained at the same level in the BC3 line. In contrast, the linuron-selected biotype with a non–target site resistance mechanism was not cross-resistant to metribuzin. In addition, the BC3 lines deriving from the non–target site resistant parents had very low-level resistance. While the target site–resistance trait is maintained through multiple crosses, non–target site based resistance would be lost over time when selection is absent or insufficient to retain all genes involved in resistance as a complex trait. This would imply A. artemisiifolia biotypes with different mechanisms would need to be managed differently over time.

Research Article
© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, as represented by the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, 2022. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the Weed Science Society of America

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Associate Editor: Christopher Preston, University of Adelaide


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