Punjab Agricultural University scientists developed sheath blight
resistant rice using an antifungal genefrom Trichoderma. Their findings
are published in/Transgenic Research/.
Sheath blight, caused by the fungal pathogen/Rhizoctonia solani/, is one
of the most devastating threats to riceproduction that accounts for up
to 50% of yield losses. The pathogen penetrates leaf blades and sheaths,
which causes plant necrosis. At present, no major disease resistance
gene against the pathogen has been found. This led the researchers to
search for ways to confer disease resistance to rice.
Transgenic indica and japonica rice cultivars were developed by
introducing antifungal /╬?-1,3-glucanase/┬átransgene cloned
from┬áTrichoderma. Up to 5-fold expression of the transgene was
confirmed. Plants carrying high levels of/╬?-1,3-glucanase/exhibited
moderate resistance to the pathogen. Disease severity was also observed
to be significantly reduced compared to non-transgenic plants.
Based on the results,/╬?-1,3-glucanase/has a role in imparting resistance
to sheath blight in rice.
Conversion of sheath blight susceptible indica and japonica rice
cultivars into moderately resistant through expression of antifungal
╬?-1,3-glucanase transgene from Trichoderma spp. | SpringerLink