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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Matthew N. Rouse (Matt)

Research Plant Pathologist

We are currently researching (1) wheat and barley resistance to stem rust including emerging races of the stem rust pathogen such as TTKSK (Ug99) and (2) physiologic specialization of the barley leaf rust pathogen in the United States.

Rust pathogens often adapt to overcome genetic resistance used in cereal varieties. Our research seeks to identify and characterize resistance that will be durable and not break down. Strategies for durable resistance that we are currently pursuing include (1) the identification of multiple highly-effective genes that can be combined together to reduce the probability that the pathogen can overcome resistance, (2) the identification of genes that confer race non-specific resistance, and (3) basic research on host-pathogen interactions towards developing novel strategies for durable resistance.

Our research is currently supported by

 (1) USDA-ARS appropriated project, "Cereal Rust Fungi: Genetics, Population Biology, and Host-Pathogen Interaction",

(2) the USDA-ARS National Plant Disease Recovery System,

(3) the Durable Rust Resistance in Wheat project administrated by Cornell University and funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the United Kingdom Department for International Development,

(4) USAID Feed the Future,

(5) Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation project "Fine-scale dissection of the host-pathogen interaction landscape using genome-wide association scans of the host and pathogen genomes", and

(6) the USDA-NIFA Triticeae Coordinated Agricultural Project.

University of Minnesota profile:

Selected presentations:

"Accessing Genetic Diversity for Wheat Resistance to Ug99" presentation at the Cornell University Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics seminar series, Ithaca, NY, 2013.

"2012 BGRI Technical Workshop Summary: Towards Durable Resistance" presentation at the Borlaug Global Rust Initiative Technical Workshop, Beijing, China, 2012.



  • Association mapping of North American spring wheat breeding germplasm reveals loci conferring resistance to Ug99 and other African stem rust races.

  • QTL mapping of adult plant resistance to Ug99 stem rust in the spring wheat population RB07/MN06113-8.

  • Mapping of SrTm4, a recessive stem rust resistance gene from diploid wheat effective to Ug99.

  • Resistance to the Ug99 race group of Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici in wheat-intra/intergenic hybrid derivatives.

  • Genetic mapping of race-specific stem rust resistance in the synthetic hexaploid W7984 x Opata M85 mapping population.
  • Emergence and spread of new races of wheat stem rust fungus: Continued threat to food security and prospects of genetic control
  • Phenotypic and genotypic characterization of race TKTTF of Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici that caused a wheat stem rust epidemic in southern Ethiopia in 2013-14

  • Identification of a stem rust resistance locus effective against Ug99 on wheat chromosome 7AL using a RAD-Seq approach.

    • 2014






    • Last Modified: 10/30/2015
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