James Winans, Julian Garcia, Kellie Damann, Gary Bergstrom
In addition to causing Fusarium head blight of wheat and other cereals, Fusarium graminearum is associated with dozens of wild or weedy grass species. Their role in the disease cycle and evolution of the pathogen has not been established despite their widespread distribution. A three-year survey of wild grasses in New York (USA) found that inflorescences and overwintered stems were frequently colonized by F. graminearum. Through a series of controlled laboratory experiments, wheat and five common grass species were compared for their potential to support inoculum production. Artificially infested stem tissue from several grasses both retained F. graminearum at higher rates through a single winter and supported greater ascospore production per dry gram than wheat. Susceptibility of these species to root and crown rot was measured with a modified seed germination assay and a diverse panel of F. graminearum isolates. Differences were seen between host species, and some grasses were resistant to infection. Our results indicate that wild grass species may support significant F. graminearum inoculum production while differing in their suitability for root and crown colonization. Studying interactions between F. graminearum and alternative host plants can improve our understanding of evolution in a broad host range pathogen and our ability to predict the risk of crop epidemics. We are currently evaluating isolates collected from wild grasses for mycotoxin production and aggressiveness on wheat.
National Institute of Agricultural Research
Nsarellah Nasserlhaq, Wuletaw Tadesse, Ahmed Birouk
In the context of climate change, drought is one of the most important and complex abiotic stresses affecting crop production worldwide. The adoption of an appropriate technological package, principally drought tolerant varieties, may overcome these challenges to meet global food security needs for the rapidly growing human population, particularly in developing countries. Therefore, this research was carried out to identify efficient phenotypic and genetic selection criteria to identify drought tolerant wheat varieties. In this perspective, 200 diverse elite bread wheat lines from ICARDA and CIMMYT were evaluated under four Moroccan environments during the 2015 and 2016 seasons for yield and 15 agro-physiological traits. The same set of genotypes was genotyped using 15k SNPs. Significant environment and genotype environment interaction effects were observed for yield. Average yield reached 3.18t/ha and ranged from 2.45 to 4.27t/ha. The secondary traits were mostly dominated by the environment effect (p<0.001). Based on correlation and regression analysis between grain yield and phenotypic data, the biomass, grain number per m<sup>2</sup> and to a lesser extent fertile spikes number and thousand kernel weights (depending of drought scenarios) can be more reliable traits than yield for the identification of drought tolerant genotypes. Moreover, the ground cover and canopy temperature depression can be used as supplementary criteria for more accurate selection. Slow selection on the basis of phenotypic traits may be accelerated and improved by using molecular markers. The genetic analysis highlighted significant SNPs and identified new QTLs linked to yield and the most efficient phenotypic traits under drought conditions. These findings could be useful for breeding drought-resistant wheat cultivars using marker-assisted selection to accumulate these favorable alleles of SNPs associated with yield-related traits to increase grain yield.
The University of Sydney
Davinder Singh, Peter Dracatos
Following the introduction of wheat stripe rust into Australia in 1979, an uncharacterized resistance (YrA) was identified in both Australian and International spring wheats. Genetic analyses of YrA indicated it was a pair of complementary genes, which were mapped to chromosomes 3DL and 5BL and designated Yr73 and Yr74, respectively. While selection Avocet 'R' carries both genes, selection Avocet 'S' carries Yr73 only. P. triticina pathotype (pt.) 104-1,2,3,(6),(7),11 +Lr37 ("104-VPM"), first detected in Australia in 2002, most likely arose via mutation from pt. 104-1,2,3,(6),(7),11 ("104"), with added virulence for Lr37. Interestingly, while both pathotypes are avirulent on Lr13, 104-VPM shows a much lower Infection Type (IT, ";1") than pt. 104 ("X++3") on several genotypes carrying Lr13 (e.g.Avocet 'R', Avocet 'S'). Other Lr13 genotypes (e.g. cv. Hereward) respond similarly to both pts ("X++3"). Genetic analyses of 4 doubled haploid (DH) populations based on intercrosses between Avocet 'R' and genotypes lacking Lr13 segregated in a 1:7 ratio to pt. 104-VPM (";1" : all other ITs). Two populations fixed for Lr13 (viz. Hereward/ Avocet 'R' and Estica/Avocet 'R') segregated 1:3 to pt. 104-VPM (";1" : all other ITs). This segregation pattern fitted a model where two complementary genes interact with Lr13 to generate the low (IT ";1") IT. Mapping of a Teal/Avocet 'R' DH population using 92 lines and 9,035 DArT-Seq markers identified three QTLs: chromosome 2BS (Lr13); chromosome 3DL (co-located with Yr73); chromosome 1DS. These results suggest that Yr73 acts in a complementary manner with a gene on chromosome 1DS to confer leaf rust resistance (IT "X"), and that these complementary genes are additive with Lr13. It appears that Yr73 is a modifier of two independent genes in wheat, one conferring resistance to stripe rust (Yr74 on chromosome 5BL), and one conferring resistance to leaf rust (LrAv on chromosome 1DS).
Aleppo University, Aleppo , Syria
Bassam,Souliman, Naem, Al-Housien, Mohammad Shafick, Hakiem, Miloudi.M, Nachit, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Wheat yellow rust, caused by Puccinia triticina f. sp. tritici, is the major problem in wheat production in most parts of West Asia. Monitoring of the pathogen virulence factors and their changes provides basic information for the development of an early warning system. Wheat yellow rust has become increasingly important in the Syrian central and coastal areas during the last three years, The objective of this study was to identify races of the pathogen. Yellow rust samples collected at sites in the central and the coastal plains, were analyzed on differential host genotypes with known seedling resistance genes. According to the results of race determination, races 230E150, 166E150, 230E142 and 462E128 were identified. The race 462E128 designated the Warrior race, was identified at several sites across the Syrian central plains at the end of the 2017 growing season (early and Mid-May) when yellow rust exploded suddenly on a number of varieties, despite their previous high resistance ratings. The infections rapidly reached significant levels, in spite of the high temperature (up to 33?C) and the absence of rainfall or irrigation. This new virulent race (462E128) has been able to attack wheat lines with several major resistance gene(s) including: Spaldings Prolific (SP), Yr 3+4, Triticum spelta (Yr5), which remained effective until 2016 in Syria, Virulence to lthe resistance genes Yr1, Yr2, Yr2+, Yr3V, Yr3ND, Yr4+, Yr6, Yr6+, Yr7, Yr7+, Yr9, Yr9+, Yr11, Yr12, Yr18, Yr24, Yr26 Spaldings Prolific (YrSP), Anza (YrA+) Spaldings Prolific (SP), Yr 3+4, Triticum spelta (Yr5) and Selkirk (YrSK) was also found. Virulence to Carstens V (CV), Yr 15/6* Avocet S and Yr 5/6* Avocet S; was not found. According to our findings, the Warrior race has increased in frequency within the mix of yellow rust races in these areas in Syria . It is expected that the Warrior yellow rust race will cause damage on resistant wheat cultivars in 2018.
USDA-ARS Cereal Disease Laboratory
Maria Ordonez, Silvia German, Kun Xiao, Amy Fox, Maricelis Acevedo
The leaf rust pathogen, Puccinia triticina is widespread across all major wheat growing regions worldwide. Collections of P. triticina were obtained from common and durum wheat in North America, South America, Europe, South Africa, the Middle East, East Africa, Russia, Central Asia, China, Pakistan and New Zealand in order to determine the genetic diversity within each region and genetic relationship between regions. A total of 831 single uredinial isolates were characterized for virulence to isogenic lines of Thatcher wheat and for molecular genotype at 23 SSR loci. The isolates in East Africa and Europe were the most diverse for the average number of effective alleles per locus, while the populations in Russia and North America were the least diverse. The isolates in Europe and South America had the highest number of multilocus genotypes of 81 and 75, respectively, and were the most diverse for Shannon's genotypic diversity. All populations had significantly higher levels of Ho compared to He at individual SSR loci, and had highly significant values of Ia and rd which indicated clonal reproduction. Europe had the highest number of distinct SSR genotype groups with eight, and Russia had only two SSR groups. The populations in North America and South America; Russia and Central Asia; the Middle East and East Africa; were closely related for SSR genotype based on Nei's genetic distance. Based on k means clustering and DAPC of SSR genotypes, isolates virulent to durum wheat were placed into a single separate group, and isolates virulent to common wheat were placed into five other groups. Twenty-seven SSR genotypes were found in different continental regions. Isolates with identical or highly related SSR genotypes also had identical or similar virulence, which indicated historical and current migration of P. triticina worldwide.
State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology in Arid Areas, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, Shaanxi, China
Hui,Liu, Guangwei, Xing, Xiaojun, Nie, Song, Weining, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
RNA editing is an important way to convert cytidine (C) to uridine (U) at specific sites within RNA molecules at a post-transcriptional level in the chloroplasts of higher plants. Although it has been systematically studied in many plants, little is known about RNA editing in the wheat D genome donor Aegilops tauschii L. Here, we investigated the chloroplast RNA editing of Ae. tauschii and compared it with other wheat relatives to trace the evolution of wheat. Through bioinformatics prediction, a total of 34 C-to-U editing sites were identified, 17 of which were validated using RT-PCR product sequencing. Furthermore, 60 sites were found by the RNA-Seq read mapping approach, 24 of which agreed with the prediction and six were validated experimentally. The editing sites were biased toward tCn or nCa trinucleotides and 50-pyrimidines, which were consistent with the flanking bases of editing sites of other seed plants. Furthermore, the editing events could result in the alteration of the secondary structures and topologies of the corresponding proteins, suggesting that RNA editing might impact the function of target genes. Finally, comparative analysis found some evolutionarily conserved editing sites in wheat and two species-specific sites were also obtained. This study is the first to report on RNA editing in Aegilops tauschii L, which not only sheds light on the evolution of wheat from the point of view of RNA editing, but also lays a foundation for further studies to identify the mechanisms of C-to-U alterations.
Genetic Resources Institute, Azerbaijan
N. Aminov, A. Jahangirov, H. Hamidov, Aigul Abugalieva, Vladmir Shamanin, Alexey Morgunov
Hexaploid synthetics have become widely used in bread wheat improvement in recent years, enabling the introduction of specific traits as well as enhancing genetic diversity and development of valuable germplasm. This study demonstrated the difference between two groups of primary synthetics in terms of development rate, plant height, rust reactions, and productivity components. During 2015 and 2016, three groups of synthetics were studied in Azerbaijan (3 sites): Baku (0 masl) under irrigated conditions, Gobustan (850 masl) under dry rainfed conditions and Ujar (20 masl) under irrigated conditions with high salinity. Germplasm was also evaluated for diseases and agronomic traits in Omsk (Russia) in 2016.
All primary synthetics were resistant to leaf rust, several to stem rust, and few to stripe rust. Stripe rust occurred in all years at all sites, proving its importance as major wheat pathogen. Its severity reached intermediate levels in Baku in 2016 (33.7%) and in Gobustan in 2015 (26.8%), and epidemic level in Gobustan in 2016 (72.7%). Gobustan also experienced high levels of stem rust in 2016. These two diseases substantially reduced grain productivity in Gobustan in 2016, especially 1000 kernel weight (30.2 g) and grain weight per spike (1.17 g). . Superior genotypes from all three groups were identified that combine high expression of spike productivity traits and stress tolerance index. Five superior synthetics were selected from each of the three groups, based on grain weight per spike. Only four of these demonstrated resistance to stripe rust (entries 13, 15, 31, and 32). Japanese synthetics (group 3) were susceptible to stripe rust but all demonstrated resistance to stem rust. Synthetics from groups 1 and 3 were all resistant to leaf rust when tested under severe disease pressure in Omsk in 2016.
ICAR-IIWBR, Regional Station, Flowerdale,Shimla 171002 H.P. India
Pramod Prasad, OmPrakash Gangwar, Hanif Khan, Siddanna Savadi, Subodh Kumar
Stem rust (Puccinia graminis tritici) (Pgt) epidemics have been reported from many wheat growing areas of the world. Stem rust races with virulence to Sr31 (Ug99 type races),are a threat to wheat producing African countries. Currently 11 different variants of the Ug99 lineage have been reported from different countries. Despite no report of Ug99 variants from any of the South Asian countries, the efforts are in place to counter the possible introduction of virulent wheat stem rust races. Stem rust surveillance has been a major component of the rust resistance breeding worldwide. This study reports virulence phenotypes and functional SSR marker based genotypes among stem rust collections in the Indian subcontinent during 2009 to 2015.
Wheat stem rust samples were analyzed on differential sets used for pathotype identification in India. Twelve pathotypes of Pgt were identified in a total of 574 samples analyzed. Pgt pathotypes 40A and 11 were identified in 36% and 32% of the samples, respectively. The stem rust resistance genes Sr7a, Sr26, Sr27, Sr31, Sr32, Sr33, Sr39, Sr40, Sr43, SrTmp and SrTt3 were found to confer resistance to the field population identified during this period. The analysis of SSR marker genotypes data revealed a high degree of variability in the Pgt population, with mean gene diversity and polymorphic information content (PIC) values of 0.56 and 0.50, respectively. STRUCTURE software divided the Pgt populations in to four subpopulations with some admixtures. The FST values of pairs of subpopulations ranged from 0.35 to 0.93 which indicated that the four sub-populations were significantly differentiated. The analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) determined that 16%, 69% and 15% of the totl variation was between population, among and within individuals, respectively. The information generated here could be a useful guide for resistance breeding and gene deployment programmes for saving South Asian wheat from stem rust.
International Center for Agriculture Research in Dry Areas (ICARDA)
ahmad amri, El-Haddoury Jamal
Constant climatic change and rapid evolution of diseases and pests have created challenges for plant breeders to find novel sources of resistance within cultivated gene pool. However wild (alien) relatives of crops still carries many promising resistance genes to biotic and abiotic stresses. Plant breeders around the world have successfully attempted to recover some of the beneficial genetic diversity lost (or never included) during the domestication and crop improvement process by crossing cultivated varieties with wild species to introgressed many valuable genes into crops like wheat and barley. This pre-breeding attempt to regain the genetic diversity of crops based on crop wild relatives (CWR) had been started at ICARDA 1994. Furthermore, The Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT) recently provided a grant to ICARDA within the Crop Wild Relatives (CWR) project to strengthen the research on use of genetic resources in pre-breeding of barley and grass pea. The pre-breeding activity in barley is focused on transferring genes of resistance to complex diseases and pests (scald, spot blotch and barley gall midge), improving tolerance to drought, heat and salinity, and enhancing the nutritional value through improving Iron and Zinc concentrations and amylases activity. Crosses were made between wild barely H. Vulgare X cultivated barley H. Vulgare subsp. H. spontaneum. The main objective of pre-breeding in Grasspea is transferring genes of low or no ?-ODAP from crossable species L. cicera and L. amphicarpus, L. tingitanus, L. aphaca, L. odoratus, L. sphaericus, L. nissolia, and L. aureus. Interspecific crosses were made between L. sativus x L.cicera followed by embryo rescue. Currently all the pre-breeding lines with targeted traits are under screening against the respective selection pressures using precision phenotyping..
ICAR-Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Regional Station, Wellington, The Nilgiris, Tamilnadu, India
SIVASAMY,MURUGASAMY, JAYAPRAKASH, PARAMASIVAM, RAJESH KUMAR, MEENA, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Emmer wheat (Triticum dicoccum L.), tetraploid species (AABB) and spelt wheat (Triticum spelta L.), hexaploid species (AABBDD) are old world hulled wheat species cultivated centuries ago in different parts of the world. These species were later replaced by higher yielding bread and durum wheat in the last centuries. Grain yield is influenced by grain number per unit area and grain size which correlates positively with grain weight. Increasing the grain number was extensively and intensively explored in the past 100 years of wheat breeding which has nearly reached to saturation and leaves little room for further yield increase due to grain number?grain size trade off. Grain size/grain weight is believed to be major driving force for further improvement of wheat yield. Both the species have been characterised with larger grain size and higher grain weight; therefore an ideal source to improve the grain size/grain weight while maintaining the grain number per spike in the cultivated bread wheat. A total of 25 accessions each of emmer and spelt wheat with good grain size and weight were crossed with 5 elite bread wheat lines. In the F2 generation, recombinant lines with good grain size, higher grain weight and grains number were further backcrossed with bread wheat. Stable lines with free threshing were obtained at BC4F4 generations and were analysed for quality. Thousand grain weight (TGW) and harvest index (HI) ranged from 46-55g and 0.47-0.58 in stable lines respectively. Stable lines yielded 16-21% than the high yielding check while number of grains per spike was maintained as that of check. Stable lines involving spelt crosses have higher grain size, TGW and HI than emmer wheat crosses. Stable lines could be released directly as cultivar or else used as one of the parents in the wheat improvement programme.