Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Advance toward controlling fungus that caused Irish potato famine

Date:
November 17, 2010
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Scientists are reporting a key advance toward development of a way to combat the terrible plant diseases that caused the Irish potato famine and still inflict billions of dollars of damage to crops each year around the world.

Potatoes and other crops may get protection against a devastating plant disease that caused the Irish potato famine.
Credit: iStockphoto/Libor Tomα?tνk

Scientists are reporting a key advance toward development of a way to combat the terrible plant diseases that caused the Irish potato famine and still inflict billions of dollars of damage to crops each year around the world. Their study appears in ACS' journal Organic Letters.

Teck-Peng Loh and colleagues point out that the Phytophthora fungi cause extensive damage to food crops such as potatoes and soybeans as well as to ornamental plants like azaleas and rhododendrons. One species of the fungus caused the Irish potato famine in the mid 1840s. That disaster resulted in nearly one million deaths from starvation and forced millions more people to flee Ireland for the United States and other countries. Still difficult to control despite the use of modern pesticides, the fungus continues to cause $6 billion in damage to global potato crops annually. Scientists, however, have isolated a key hormone, alpha-1, that allows Phytophthora to reproduce. The hormone exists in several different forms, and a synthetic version of the most biologically active form could provide the basis for developing a way to control the fungus and reduce its threat, the scientists suggest.

They describe an advance toward this goal, the synthesis of a particularly active form of the mating hormone called (3R,7R,11R,15R)-hormone alpha-1. The scientists also showed that they could make relatively large quantities of the hormone. The advance could open the door to an effective method to fight this ancient scourge, they suggest.

The authors acknowledged funding from the Nanyang Technological University, Ministry of Education and Biomedical Research Council (A*STAR grant M47110006).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Shun-Yi Wang, Ping Song, Li-Yan Chan, Teck-Peng Loh. Total Synthesis ofPhytophthoraMating Hormone α1. Organic Letters, 2010; 12 (22): 5166 DOI: 10.1021/ol102177j

Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "Advance toward controlling fungus that caused Irish potato famine." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101117121811.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2010, November 17). Advance toward controlling fungus that caused Irish potato famine. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101117121811.htm
American Chemical Society. "Advance toward controlling fungus that caused Irish potato famine." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101117121811.htm (accessed April 21, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, April 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

AP (Apr. 21, 2014) — Breakfast is now being served with a side of sticker shock. The cost of morning staples like bacon, coffee and orange juice is on the rise because of global supply problems. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mich. Boy Unearths 10,000-Year-Old Mastodon Tooth

Mich. Boy Unearths 10,000-Year-Old Mastodon Tooth

Newsy (Apr. 20, 2014) — A 9-year-old Michigan boy was exploring a creek when he came across a 10,000-year-old tooth from a prehistoric mastodon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

AP (Apr. 18, 2014) — Dairy farmers and ethnic groups in Vermont are both benefiting from a unique collaborative effort that's feeding a growing need for fresh and affordable goat meat. (April 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) — Andy Dixon showed the Daily Mail a screenshot of what he believes to be the mythical beast swimming just below the lake's surface. Video provided by Newsy
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:
from the past week

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