Submitted to: Mid Atlantic Plant Molecular Biology Society Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/19/2008
Publication Date: 8/21/2008
Citation: Meinhardt, L.W., Bailey, B.A., Guiltinan, M., Carazzolle, M.F., Lacerda, G., Mondego, J., Formigheri, E., Periera, G.A. 2008. Comparative genome analyses of moniliophthora perniciosa and moniliophthora roreri: two closely related phytopathogenic basidiomycetes that cause distinctly different diseases of theobroma cacao. Mid Atlantic Plant Molecular Biology Society Conference. . Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Theobroma cacao (cacao), the source of chocolate, is a tropical understory tree. Fungal diseases such as Witches’ Broom Disease (WBD) and Frosty Pod Rot Disease (FPRD) of cacao have devastated cacao production in much of the Western Hemisphere and are threats to the main cacao producing regions in Africa and Southeast Asia. WBD is caused by the fungus Moniliophthora perniciosa (formerly known as Crinipellis perniciosa), and FPRD is caused by Moniliophthora roreri. Utilizing a combination of sequencing systems we have completed detailed draft genomes of M. perniciosa and M. roreri. A total of 325 Mbp (approx. 7X coverage) of M. perniciosa and 844 Mbp (approx. 16X coverage) have been sequenced. The genome sizes predicted from these sequences are 46 Mbp for M. perniciosa and 52 Mbp for M. roreri. A comparison at the nucleotide level shows that 70% of the sequences have 80% identity. This comparison gives similar results at the AA level with 70% of the sequences having 75% identity. The comparative analyses of these genomes have identified several pathogenicity genes in common and will be important for understand key physiological, morphological and pathogenic differences between these two closely related fungal pathogens.