The status of food insecurity in the world is devastating and fungal based diseases are a major cause that result in approximately 40-60% crop yield loss. Although synthetic chemical fungicides have been the preferred immediate method for management of fungal diseases, they have undesirable effects on human and animal health; causes environmental hazards, and are expensive. This study investigated whether the natural products from Vernonia glabra (Asteraceae) could be used as alternative biofungicide against disease causing agricultural fungi. Fractions were separated from V. glabra methanolic flower crude extract, using bioassayguided fractionation. The single pure fraction yielded was selected for bioassay tests, and was isolated and characterized using chromatographic and spectrometric methods. In vitro bioassay test was performed against spore germination of Fusarium graminearum, F. oxysporum, F. verticillioides, Zymoseptoria tritici, Ustilago maydis, and Pyricularia oryzae. A known sesquiterpene lactone, Vernodalol was identified using high resolution mass spectrometry.
Keywords : Plant Fungal Diseases; Alternative Biofungicides; Sesquiterpene Lactones; Food Security.