My group is working on quantitative disease resistance in maize. We have now completed and published several quantitative trait loci (QTL) and breeding studies on resistance to a number of (mainly foliar) leaf diseases. We have started to characterize some QTL using expression analysis with near-isogenic lines. We have also identified some QTL that confer resistance to multiple diseases. We have fine-mapped several loci and are close to cloning a couple. One of these is the subject of a CRADA with Pioneer (agreement #58-3K95-8-1287).
We are collaborating with groups at Purdue University and the University of Missouri on a five-year NSF-funded project ( http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardNumber=0822495) to dissect the maize defence response to pathogens using a novel approach we have termed MAGIC (mutant assisted gene identification and characterization). Apart from the ongoing NSF grant and the Pioneer CRADA, we’ve also received funding from the North Carolina corn growers for the past five years. We have recently finished up two projects funded by USDA-ARS-CREES and CGIAR, an international agricultural research organization.
Want To Know What a Gene Does? Use a Little MAGIC.
Agricultural Research Magazine
September 2010 - Vol. 58, No. 8