Variability in Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae, the incitant of bacterial blight disease of rice. II. Phage sensitivity of the isolates

Attempts were made to classify different isolates of Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae, the causal organism of bacterial blight disease of rice, through their phage sensitivity and correlate it with their virulence. Fifteen phage strains were isolated from infected leaf samples collected from different states of India. The sensitivity of 52 bacterial strains, collected from 12 rice growing states of the country, to individual phage strains was determined by spot test and plaque test. These could be grouped into 13 lysotypes on the basis of their phage sensitivity by conventional methods, also confirmed through cluster analysis. Irrespective of the methods of grouping, the isolates in each lysotype were exactly the same. Each lysotype consisted of bacterial isolates originating from different states and belonging to different pathotypes as well as virulence factors. On the other hand, the isolates of same origin, pathotypes or virulence factors were randomly distributed over different lysotypes, thus proving non-parallelism between clustering pattern and geographical distribution. There was no relationship between phage sensitivity and virulence of the isolates.