Submitted to: American Society of Plant Biologists Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/1/2005
Publication Date: 7/9/2005
Citation: Federico, M., Abebe, T., Puthigae, S., Kaeppler, H., Skadsen, R.W. 2005. Barley promoters for organs susceptible to Fusarium graminearum. Proceedings of American Society of Plant Biologists Annual Meeting. [abstract]. Paper No. 1105-311.
Technical Abstract: Fusarium Head Blight (FHB, or scab) is a fungal disease that causes significant seed yield and quality losses in barley and wheat worldwide. The fungus lowers yield and deposits toxic levels of mycotoxins. The pericarp and lemma/palea (hull) are readily infected by Fusarium graminearum. The restricted expression of antifungal protein genes in these spike tissues could be used to complement ongoing breeding efforts to develop resistant lines. Barley genes specifically expressed in lemma, palea and pericarp tissues were cloned, and their promoters were tested. These included 1) a lipid transfer protein (Ltp6), highly expressed in the pericarp, coleoptile and embryo, 2) two germin-like proteins (GerB and GerF), highly expressed in the lemma, palea, pericarp and col eoptile, 3) a jacaline-like gene, Lem2, preferentially expressed in the lemma, palea and coleoptile, 4) and an unknown gene, Lem1, specifically expressed in young lemmas. The ability of these promoters to direct tissue-specific expression of a gfp (green fluorescent protein) reporter gene was tested by transient expression assays and stable transformations. These tests showed that we are able to couple anti-Fusarium protein genes to these promoters and produce potential lethal barriers to penetration by the fungus. These studies will lead to the development of barley varieties that are resistant to Fusarium. This will benefit barley farmers, maltsters and breweries by producing mycotoxin-free barley.