Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Gene Clusters Offer Potential Protection Against Plant Diseases

Date:
April 24, 2008
Source:
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Summary:
New research has revealed novel pseudomonad compounds and toxins with potential benefits for plants and people. Pseudomonads are a diverse group of bacteria, some of which harm plants and animals, while others are beneficial.

Entomologist Denny Bruck injects a larva of the tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta, with P. fluorescens Pf-5.
Credit: Photo by Joyce Loper

New research supported by the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) has revealed novel pseudomonad compounds and toxins with potential benefits for plants and people. Pseudomonads are a diverse group of bacteria, some of which harm plants and animals, while others are beneficial.

Related Articles


Within every genome, there are chunks of DNA whose functions are unknown. Some of these are similar to genes that make natural products. Because scientists don't know which specific natural products these genes make, these segments are known as "orphan gene clusters."

According to Joyce Loper, a plant pathologist at the ARS Horticultural Crops Research Laboratory in Corvallis, Ore., it's likely that some orphan gene clusters produce natural products that could become new antibiotics. Identifying these gene clusters and their products would give scientists new tools that can be used to fight harmful microorganisms.

Working with scientists at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at University of California-San Diego, Oregon State University, and Northland College in Ashland, Wis., Loper investigated a new method for determining the products of orphan gene clusters.

The scientists used what they call a "genomisotopic" approach, which combines genomic sequence analysis and isotope-guided fractionation, the process of isolating compounds.

Loper and her colleagues applied the genomisotopic method to the genome of the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens Pf-5, a biological control agent that protects plants from diseases. Scientists have long known that Pf-5 makes antibiotics, but by using the method, they've identified two antibiotics that had never been seen before.

These studies were funded jointly by ARS, the National Institutes of Health, the German Research Foundation, and the Microbial Genomic Sequencing Program, an initiative of the USDA Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service (CSREES). In 2007, CSREES funded the sequencing of seven additional Pseudomonas species, four of which are under investigation in ARS laboratories.

Further research could identify new natural products with valuable properties, with potential for use in antibiotics, drugs or pesticides.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by U.S. Department of Agriculture. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

U.S. Department of Agriculture. "Gene Clusters Offer Potential Protection Against Plant Diseases." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080420110441.htm>.
U.S. Department of Agriculture. (2008, April 24). Gene Clusters Offer Potential Protection Against Plant Diseases. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080420110441.htm
U.S. Department of Agriculture. "Gene Clusters Offer Potential Protection Against Plant Diseases." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080420110441.htm (accessed November 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Your Complicated Job Might Keep Your Brain Young

Your Complicated Job Might Keep Your Brain Young

Newsy (Nov. 20, 2014) Researchers at the University of Edinburgh found the more complex your job is, the sharper your cognitive skills will likely be as you age. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mysterious Glow Worms Found in the Amazon

Mysterious Glow Worms Found in the Amazon

Buzz60 (Nov. 20, 2014) Wildlife photographer Jeff Cremer teamed up with entomologist Aaron Pomerantz and others to investigate a predatory glow worm found in the Amazon. Patrick Jones (@Patrick_E_Jones) explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Huge Snow Covers Buffalo Streets

Raw: Huge Snow Covers Buffalo Streets

AP (Nov. 20, 2014) A new blast of lake-effect snow roared through western New York with thunder and lightning on Thursday, raising to nearly 6 feet the three-day total in parts of the Buffalo area. (Nov. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Report Warns of Global Chocolate Shortage

Report Warns of Global Chocolate Shortage

Buzz60 (Nov. 20, 2014) A new report warns the world could face a 2.2-billion pound chocolate shortage within the next five years. Mike Janela (@mikejanela) explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins