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Non–target site based resistance to the ALS-inhibiting herbicide mesosulfuron-methyl in American sloughgrass (Beckmannia syzigachne)

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  30 May 2019

Mingliang Wang
Master’s Student, College of Plant Health and Medicine, Qingdao Agricultural University, Shandong Qingdao, People’s Republic of China
Bingqi Liu
Master’s Student, College of Plant Health and Medicine, Qingdao Agricultural University, Shandong Qingdao, People’s Republic of China
Yihui Li
Master’s Student, College of Plant Health and Medicine, Qingdao Agricultural University, Shandong Qingdao, People’s Republic of China
Xiaoyong Luo
Professor, College of Plant Health and Medicine, Qingdao Agricultural University, Shandong Qingdao, People’s Republic of China
Lingxu Li*
Associate Professor, College of Plant Health and Medicine, Qingdao Agricultural University, Shandong Qingdao, People’s Republic of China
Author for correspondence: Lingxu Li, College of Plant Health and Medicine, Qingdao Agricultural University, Shandong Qingdao 266109, People’s Republic of China. Email:


American sloughgrass [Beckmannia syzigachne (Steud.) Fernald] is one of the most predominant and troublesome weeds in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) fields rotated with rice (Oryza sativa L.) in China. Mesosulfuron-methyl is one of the main herbicides used to selectively control B. syzigachne in winter wheat fields in China. After many years of application, mesosulfuron-methyl failed to control B. syzigachne in Yutai County. The objectives of this study were to determine the resistance level to mesosulfuron-methyl and other acetolactate synthase (ALS) inhibitors in the B. syzigachne population collected from Yutai County (R) and identify the mechanism of resistance. The results indicated that the R population was 4.1-fold resistant to mesosulfuron-methyl and was cross-resistant to pyroxsulam (600-fold), imazethapyr (4.1-fold), flucarbazone (12-fold), and bispyribac-sodium (12-fold). In vitro assays revealed that ALS in the R population was as sensitive as that in a susceptible (S) population. Gene sequence analysis identified no known resistant mutations in the ALS gene of the R population. Furthermore, real-time quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR experiments indicated that the expression level of the ALS gene in the R population was not different from that of the S population. However, the cytochrome P450 inhibitor malathion reversed the R population's resistance to mesosulfuron-methyl. The result of ultraperformance liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS-MS) spectral analysis indicated that the metabolic rates of mesosulfuron-methyl in the R population were significantly faster than in the S population. Therefore, non-target resistance to mesosulfuron-methyl has been demonstrated in the R population. The resistance was very likely caused by enhanced herbicide metabolism.

Research Article
© Weed Science Society of America, 2019 

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