Dolores Fernández Ortuño holds a degree (2002) and a PhD (2007) in Biology from the University of Malaga. Her scientific career, focused from the beginning on fungicide resistance studies in various phytopathogenic fungi, was completed with two post-doctoral stays abroad. She spent three years as a post-doctoral researcher, with a grant from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation, in the Fungicide Resistance group at the Rothamsted Research Centre for Agricultural Research (UK); and another three and a half years as a post-doctoral researcher at Clemson University (USA) funded by the Marie Curie COFUND U-Mobility programme.
Her work, with high scientific and academic value, is also of great applied interest for agriculture, and this is reflected in her more than thirty indexed publications, participation in conferences and articles in agricultural journals, interviews in the media, and awards and recognitions received from the agricultural sector.
ComFuturo Researcher (I edition) in the research line of the programme “Agrochemicals“. She developed, at the Institute of Subtropical and Mediterranean Horticulture “La Mayora” (CSIC/University of Malaga), her project “Fungicide resistance monitoring programme for strawberry pathogens“.
Fungicides are widely used to combat certain diseases caused by phytopathogenic fungi. Many fungi develop resistance to these chemical compounds shortly after their use, causing significant crop losses. This is the case of Podosphaera aphanis and Botrytis cinerea, the causal agents of powdery mildew and grey rot of strawberry, respectively. Both diseases are prevalent during the growing season and cause a decrease in production, which leads to significant economic losses. Therefore, it is important to develop a resistance monitoring programme that allows knowing quickly and reliably which fungicides are or are not effective in a given strawberry plantation, enabling rapid action.
A kit will be developed, with multi-well plates, to allow the evaluation of all kinds of fungicides authorised in Spain to combat these diseases in the strawberry crop. The ideal fungicide concentration for the test will be established, which will make it possible to distinguish whether the fungus is sensitive or resistant after 8 (Podosphaera aphanis) and 4 (Botrytis cinerea) days of incubation, respectively. A web application will then be developed, which, after analysing the results, will generate a report to be sent to the farmer.
This report will advise which fungicides are working and which should be discarded on his farm, thus avoiding unnecessary costs from an economic and environmental point of view. Furthermore, the project continues to determine the molecular mechanisms of resistance for each kind of fungicide in an effort to improve current control strategies for both diseases. Our resistance monitoring programme could be used, in the future, as an adaptable model in the control of diseases produced by these or other biotrophic and necrotrophic fungi in other crops of interest in our country.
Application: The aim is to quickly and reliably determine how effective specific fungicides are for the control of botrytis and powdery mildew diseases in strawberry plantations. The expected results will undoubtedly contribute to the development of more sustainable and productive agriculture.
Scientific production derived from the ComFuturo Project
- D. Fernández-Ortuño; A. Vielba-Fernandez; A. Pérez-García; J.A. Torés; A. de Vicente (2018). First report of fenpyrazamine resistance in Botrytis cinerea from strawberry fields in Spain. PLANT HEALTH PROGRESS.DOI: 10.1094/PHP-12-17-0075-BR
- D. Fernández Ortuño; A. Pérez García; M. Chamorro; E. de la Peña; A. de Vicente; J.A. Torés (2017). Resistance to SDHI fungicides boscalid, fluopyram, fluxapyroxad, and penthiopyrad in Botrytis cinerea from commercial strawberry fields in Spain. PLANT DISEASE. DOI: 10.1094/PDIS-01-17-0067-RE
- D. Fernández Ortuño; J.A. Torés; M. Chamorro; A. Pérez García, A. de Vicente (2016). Characterization of resistance to six chemical clases of site-specific fungicides registered for gray mold control on strawberries in Spain. PLANT DISEASE. DOI: 1094/PDIS-03-16-0280-RE
- D. Fernández Ortuño, J.A. Torés, A. Pérez García, A. de Vicente (2016). First report of fludioxonil resistance in Botrytis cinerea, the casual agent of gray mold, from strawberry fields in Spain. PLANT DISEASE. DOI: 1094/PDIS-0216-0172-PDN
Works presented at conferences
- D. Fernández-Ortuño; A. Pérez-García; J.A. Torés; A. de Vicente. Resistance to SDHI fungicides in Botrytis cinerea from comercial strawberry fields in Spain. ICPP Boston 2018. Plant Health in a Global Economy. The American Phytopathological Society and The International Society for Plant Pathology. Poster. Boston, United States. 29/07/2018-04/08/2018
- A. Vielba-Fernández; D. Fernández-Ortuño. La gestion de la résistance du Botrytis cinerea aux fongicides sur fraisier. Nouvelles techniques de production de la fraise pour la durabilité du système agricole dans le Gharb et Loukkos. Invited oral presentation. Bab Lbhar/Larache, Morocco. 24/03/2018
- D. Fernández-Ortuño; A. Pérez-García; J.A. Torés; A. de Vicente. Resistance to the SDHI fungicides boscalid, fluopyram, fluxapyroxad, and penthiopyrad in Botrytis cinerea from commercial strawberry fields in Spain. I Reunión del grupo especializado SEF «Control químico de enfermedades y desarrollo de resistencias a productos fitosanitarios». Oral presentation. Málaga. 02/10/2017-02/10/2017
- D. Fernández Ortuño, J.A. Torés, M. Chamorro Rodriguez, A. Pérez García, A. de Vicente. Resistencia a múltiples fungicidas en aislados de Botrytis cinerea desde muestras de fresa en Huelva. Producción sostenible de hortalizas y fresón para una alimentación saludable. Oral presentation. Almería, Spain. 21/02/2017-23/02/2017
- D. Fernández Ortuño, J.A. Torés, M. Chamorro Rodriguez, A. Pérez García, A. de Vicente. Characterization of resistance to all chemical classes of site-specific fungicides registered for gray mold control on strawberries in Spain. XVIII Congreso de la Sociedad Española de Fitopatología. Oral presentation. Palencia, Spain. 20/09/2016 – 23/09/2016
- D. Fernández Ortuño, J.A Torés, M. Chamorro Rodriguez, A. de Vicente. Resistance to multiple fungicides in Botrytis cinerea from comercial strawberry fields in Spain. 18th International Reinhardsbrunn Symposium: Modern Fungicides and Antifungal Compounds. Oral presentation. Friedrichroda, Germany. 24/04/2016 – 28/04/2016
- D. Fernández Ortuño, R. Cerezo Arrabal, M. Chamorro, J.A. Torés; A. de Vicente. Fungicide resistance profiles in Botrytis cinerea from strawberry fields in Spain. RESISTANCE 2015. Poster. Harpenden, Bedfordshire & Hertfordshire, UK. 14/09/2015 – 16/09/2015