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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Pullman, Washington » WHGQ » Research » Research Project #428653

Research Project: Genomics, Genetic Diversity and Ecology of Plant Pathogens and Biocontrol Agents and Plant Defense Mechanisms

Location: Wheat Health, Genetics, and Quality Research

Project Number: 2090-22000-017-02-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jun 1, 2015
End Date: Apr 30, 2020

Objective:
The objectives of this cooperative research are to: 1) genotypically and phenotypically characterize plant pathogens that cause diseases of crops grown in cereal-based cropping systems, 2) to genotypically and phenotypically characterize beneficial microbes that suppress plant diseases and analyze the microbiomes of plants in these cropping systems, and 3) to determine the molecular genetic and biochemical basis of plant-microbe interactions and plant defense.

Approach:
Plant pathogens and their biocontrol agents will be characterized through a combination of molecular fingerprinting techniques, whole genome sequencing and methods of classical plant pathology and microbiology. The population structures of pathogens and biocontrol agents will be determined by analysis of DNA banding patterns generated by techniques such as rep-PCR, RFLPs, and AFLPs, by sequence analysis of 16S rDNA and key genes, by multi-locus sequence analysis, and by whole genome sequencing. Microbial communities in soil and root microbiomes will be analyzed using next-generation sequencing techniques. Results of genotypic and phenotypic analyses will be compared. Plant-microbe interactions will be characterized using a combination of laboratory, greenhouse and field studies, and molecular genetic and bioanalytical tools. Biologically active metabolites produced by pathogens and antagonists will be characterized using techniques such as high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and mass spectrometry.