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ARS Home » Plains Area » Manhattan, Kansas » Center for Grain and Animal Health Research » Hard Winter Wheat Genetics Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #232853


Location: Hard Winter Wheat Genetics Research

Title: Methods for Detecting Chromosome Rearrangements in Gibberella Zeae

item Bowden, Robert - Bob
item Fuentes-bueno, Irazema
item Leslie, John
item Lee, Jungkwan
item Lee, Yin-won

Submitted to: Cereal Research Communications
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/8/2008
Publication Date: 9/12/2008
Citation: Bowden, R.L., Fuentes-Bueno, I., Leslie, J.F., Lee, J., Lee, Y. 2008. Methods for Detecting Chromosome Rearrangements in Gibberella Zeae. Cereal Research Communications.36:609-615.

Interpretive Summary: The fungus Gibberella zeae (also known as Fusarium graminearum) causes Fusarium head blight of wheat and barley. This species is composed of multiple lineages that are morphologically similar and that are capable of crossing with each other to varying degrees. Chromosome rearrangements between the lineages could be an important barrier to fertility. This paper describes rapid methods for detecting chromosome rearrangements in this species.

Technical Abstract: Chromosome rearrangements between fungal strains may reduce fertility in sexual crosses through the production of genetically inviable recombinant progeny. As such, rearrangements can be important postzygotic reproductive barriers that contribute to the speciation process. The presence of chromosome rearrangements in crosses with Gibberella zeae was tested by counting asci with 8, 6, 4, or 2 viable ascospores. Counts were made by observing rosettes of asci extruded from crushed perithecia and by observing unordered ascospore tetrads ejected onto agar slabs from mature perithecia. The two methods gave similar results. Self-fertilized cultures served as controls and produced the normal eight ascospores per ascus in >98% of cases. Crosses with strains known to carry chromosome rearrangements produced significant frequencies of asci with 6, 4, or 2 ascospores, as expected. These results suggest that these methods will be useful to survey populations of G. zeae for chromosome rearrangements.