Susceptibility genes: an additional source for improved resistance

Kaile Sun

Research output: Thesisinternal PhD, WU

Abstract

Potato is affected by several diseases. Although, resistance can be obtained by introgression of major resistance genes from wild species, this has rarely been durable. Hence, other sources of resistance are highly needed. New research with a focus on loss of function mutations has led to the identification of disease susceptibility (S) genes in plants. The research in this thesis was aimed at the identification and characterization of potato S genes involved in the interaction with Phytophthora infestans and Botrytis cinerea. We selected 11 Arabidopsis thaliana S genes and silenced their potato orthologs by RNAi in the potato cultivar Desiree. The silencing of six genes resulted in resistance to P. infestans. Moreover, silencing of StDND1 reduced the infection of B. cinerea. Microscopic analysis showed that spore attachment and/or germination of P. infestans and B. cinerea was hampered on the leaf surface of StDND1-silenced potato plants. On StDMR1- and StDMR6-silenced potato plants, hyphal growth of P. infestans was arrested by the hypersensitive response-like cell death. Our results demonstrate that impairment of plant S genes may open a new way for breeding potatoes with resistance to pathogens like P. infestans and B. cinerea.

Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Wageningen University
Supervisors/Advisors
  • Visser, Richard, Promotor
  • Jacobsen, Evert, Co-promotor
  • Bai, Yuling, Co-promotor
Award date16 May 2017
Place of PublicationWageningen
Publisher
Print ISBNs9789463431415
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Keywords

  • solanum tuberosum
  • potatoes
  • solanum lycopersicum
  • tomatoes
  • genes
  • susceptibility
  • plant pathogenic fungi
  • phytophthora infestans
  • disease resistance
  • plant breeding

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