Project Number: 5010-11420-001-006-T
Project Type: Trust Fund Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Oct 1, 2021
End Date: Sep 30, 2023
Objective: Develop an endophyte-based delivery system for double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) to control Fusarium mycotoxin production and mitigate associated corn crop losses.
We propose to develop an innovative method to deliver dsRNAs efficiently and continuously to maintain the RNAi effect in planta using an endophyte delivery system. We will utilize a corn endophyte to continuously produce and supply RNAi signals to combat Fusarium pathogens and mycotoxin contamination. We will introduce dsRNA constructs already developed by ARS into a corn endophyte, inoculate variable corn varieties with the transgenic endophyte, and then determine the RNAi silencing efficacy targeting these critical mycotoxin biosynthesis genes of Fusarium graminearum and Fusarium verticillioides.