A GENOME-WIDE SCREEN TO IDENTIFY NOVEL GENES FOR RESISTANCE TO FUSARIUM HEAD BLIGHT

Project Details

Description

The goal of this project is to identify plant genes that confer resistance against Fusarium Head Blight (FHB) and reduce deoxynivalenol (DON) accumulation. The identification of such genes offers the possibility to more fully understand the mechanisms of Fusarium susceptibility and to design transgenic strategies to increase FHB resistance in barley and wheat. We are using activating tagging to identify genes which confer resistance to trichothecenes. Activation tagging uses a modified T-DNA vector which contains multiple copies of the cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV) 35S gene enhancer arranged in tandem. In addition to knocking out genes, the modified T-DNA vector can also function as an enhancer when inserted either upstream or downstream of a gene to produce gain-of-function phenotypes. Using this approach, we have screened ~250,000 activation tagged Arabidopsis seeds for resistance to trichothecin and identified 30 lines that showed resistance. Characterization of one of these lines identified two novel lipid transfer protein (LTP) genes, designated as LTP4 and LTP5, which were overexpressed compared to the wild-type control. LTPs are small cysteine-rich proteins that transfer lipids between membranes in vitro. These results validated activation tagging as a valuable strategy to identify candidate plant genes for trichothecene resistance. The primary goal of this application is to determine if the novel genes identified from the activation tagging screen in Arabidopsis will confer resistance to DON and FHB in transgenic wheat and barley plants.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date7/1/126/30/17

Funding

  • National Institute of Food and Agriculture (National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA))

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