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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Raleigh, North Carolina » Plant Science Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #338179

Research Project: Genetic Analysis of Complex Traits in Maize

Location: Plant Science Research

Title: A maize caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase gene confers quantitative resistance to multiple pathogens

Author
item Yang, Qin - North Carolina State University
item He, Yijian - North Carolina State University
item Kabahuma, Mercy - Iowa State University
item Chaya, Timothy - University Of Delaware
item Kelly, Amy - North Carolina State University
item Borrego, Eli - Texas A&m University
item Bian, Yang - North Carolina State University
item El Kasmi, Farid - University Of North Carolina
item Yang, Li - University Of North Carolina
item Teixeira, Paulo - University Of North Carolina
item Kolkman, Judith - Cornell University - New York
item Nelson, Rebecca - Cornell University - New York
item Kolomiets, Michael - Texas A&m University
item Dangl, Jeffery - University Of North Carolina
item Wisser, Randall - University Of Delaware
item Caplan, Jeffrey - University Of Delaware
item Li, Xu - North Carolina State University
item Lauter, Nicholas
item Balint-kurti, Peter

Submitted to: Nature Genetics
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/1/2017
Publication Date: 6/1/2017
Citation: Yang, Q., He, Y., Kabahuma, M., Chaya, T., Kelly, A., Borrego, E., Bian, Y., El Kasmi, F., Yang, L., Teixeira, P., Kolkman, J., Nelson, R., Kolomiets, M., Dangl, J., Wisser, R., Caplan, J., Li, X., Lauter, N.C., Balint Kurti, P.J. 2017. A maize caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase gene confers quantitative resistance to multiple pathogens. Nature Genetics. 49:1364-1372.

Interpretive Summary: In this paper we describe the identification of a gene that is involved in resistance to two important leaf diseases of maize: Gray leaf spot and southern leaf blight. The gene is ZmCCoAOMT2, which encodes a caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase enzyme associated with the production of the structural organic polymer lignin. We show that increased expression of the gene is associated with increased resistance and increased levels of lignin.

Technical Abstract: Alleles that confer multiple disease resistance (MDR) are valuable in crop improvement though molecular mechanisms underlying their functions remain largely unknown. A QTL, qMdr9.02, associated with resistance to three important foliar maize diseases, southern leaf blight (SLB), gray leaf spot (GLS) and northern leaf blight (NLB) had been identified on maize chromosome 9. Through fine mapping, association analysis, expression analysis, insertional mutagenesis, and transgenic validation, we demonstrate that ZmCCoAOMT2, which encodes a caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase enzyme associated with the phenylpropanoid pathway and lignin production, is the gene within qMdr9.02 conferring quantitative resistance to both SLB and GLS.