Nav: Home

Enhanced wheat curl mite control found in genes

November 09, 2016

AMARILLO - The Texas High Plains high winds are known for causing more than just bad hair days; they are a major contributor to the spread of wheat curl mite-transmitted viral diseases in wheat.

Cultural control is not very effective because the wind can spread the mites and thus devastating diseases such as wheat streak mosaic virus, said Dr. Shuyu Liu, Texas A&M AgriLife Research small grains geneticist in Amarillo.

In a paper, Wheat Curl Mite Resistance in Hard Winter Wheat in the U.S. Great Plains, published recently in Crop Science journal, the wheat genetics research team at Amarillo led by Liu outlined how the better control will come through genetics.

In addition to the wheat genetics team, the work was supplemented by the pathology program led by Dr. Charlie Rush, the wheat breeding program by Dr. Jackie Rudd and the physiology program led by Dr. Qingwu Xue, all in Amarillo.

Liu explained that the problem begins with the practice of planting wheat early for cattle grazing. The early wheat is prone to wheat curl mite infestation and thus wheat streak mosaic virus, as well as other diseases.

"A number of growth chamber studies and field variety trials have shown that wheat lines with wheat curl mite-resistance routinely exhibit reduced damage from mite-vectored virus diseases," Liu said.

The genetics research team attacked the problem with a two-pronged approach - study the mites to determine what they attack the hardest and study the wheat varieties to see which provide the most resistance and what prompts that resistance.

In the study, he said, they applied molecular techniques to differentiate the various mite collections from different regions. They identified one Texas collection virulent to wheat lines with rye translocations, and determined wheat varieties with only the rye chromosome fragment will be susceptible.

His team applied molecular techniques to identify the genes within the wheat that provided the mite resistance. That resulted in a newly validated protocol used to screen hard winter wheat lines and cultivars for resistance to the wheat curl mite.

"In our screening, there were relatively high numbers of wheat lines from the Texas A&M breeding program that exhibited resistance to the wheat curl mite, which was mainly due to the utilization of TAM 112 sources in the crosses," Liu said.

TAM 112 is a popular cultivar for its drought tolerance and had been identified by the Texas A&M wheat breeding program as having resistance to wheat curl mite and wheat streak mosaic virus under field conditions.

Through the newly developed protocol, Liu's team determined that TAM 112 and its derived lines, including TAM 204, have the resistance gene from Aegilops tauschii, an annual goatgrass that is an ancestor of bread wheat.

Both Aegilops tauschii and the rye influence provide TAM 112's wheat curl mite resistance, he said. The one from rye doesn't work against some of the wheat curl mite populations in Texas, but it does have value in many field situations.

This research clears up some confusion as to why some TAM 112 progeny were not consistently resistant. Only the Aegilops tauschii gene gives resistance to the most prevalent wheat curl mite strain.

Now wheat breeders can develop other wheat curl mite-resistant varieties by using the.genetic markers to get the most effective gene and avoid testing lines with inconsistent resistance, he said.

Texas A&M AgriLife Communications

Related Genetics Articles:

Turning to genetics to treat little hearts
Researchers makes a breakthrough in understanding the mechanisms of a common congenital heart disease.
New drugs more likely to be approved if backed up by genetics
A new drug candidate is more likely to be approved for use if it targets a gene known to be linked to the disease; a finding that can help pharmaceutical companies to focus their drug development efforts.
Mapping millet genetics
New DNA sequences will aid in the development of improved millet varieties
Genetics to feed the world
A study, published in Nature Genetics, demonstrated the effectiveness of the technology known as genomic selection in a wheat improvement program.
Genetics researchers find new neurodevelopmental syndrome
Researchers have identified a gene mutation that causes developmental delay, intellectual disability, behavioral abnormalities and musculoskeletal problems in children.
The genetics of cancer
A research team has identified a new circular RNA (ribonucleic acid) that increases tumor activity in soft tissue and connective tissue tumors.
New results on fungal genetics
An international team of researchers has found unusual genetic features in fungi of the order Trichosporonales.
Mouse genetics influences the microbiome more than environment
Genetics has a greater impact on the microbiome than maternal birth environment, at least in mice, according to a study published this week in Applied and Environmental Microbiology.
New insights into genetics of fly longevity
Alexey Moskalev, Ph.D., Head of the Laboratory of Molecular Radiobiology and Gerontology Institute of Biology, and co-authors from the Institute of biology of Komi Science Center of RAS, Engelgard's Institute of molecular biology, involved in the study of the aging mechanisms and longevity of model animals announce the publication of a scientific article titled: 'The Neuronal Overexpression of Gclc in Drosophila melanogaster Induces Life Extension With Longevity-Associated Transcriptomic Changes in the Thorax' in Frontiers in Genetics - a leading open science platform.
Some personal beliefs and morals may stem from genetics
Penn State researchers found that while parents can help encourage their children to develop into responsible, conscientious adults, there is an underlying genetic factor that influences these traits, as well.
More Genetics News and Genetics Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Mindset
In the past few months, human beings have come together to fight a global threat. This hour, TED speakers explore how our response can be the catalyst to fight another global crisis: climate change. Guests include political strategist Tom Rivett-Carnac, diplomat Christiana Figueres, climate justice activist Xiye Bastida, and writer, illustrator, and artist Oliver Jeffers.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#562 Superbug to Bedside
By now we're all good and scared about antibiotic resistance, one of the many things coming to get us all. But there's good news, sort of. News antibiotics are coming out! How do they get tested? What does that kind of a trial look like and how does it happen? Host Bethany Brookeshire talks with Matt McCarthy, author of "Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic", about the ins and outs of testing a new antibiotic in the hospital.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Speedy Beet
There are few musical moments more well-worn than the first four notes of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. But in this short, we find out that Beethoven might have made a last-ditch effort to keep his music from ever feeling familiar, to keep pushing his listeners to a kind of psychological limit. Big thanks to our Brooklyn Philharmonic musicians: Deborah Buck and Suzy Perelman on violin, Arash Amini on cello, and Ah Ling Neu on viola. And check out The First Four Notes, Matthew Guerrieri's book on Beethoven's Fifth. Support Radiolab today at