Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New hope for powdery mildew resistant barley

Date:
July 25, 2014
Source:
University of Adelaide
Summary:
New research has opened the way for the development of new lines of barley with resistance to powdery mildew. "Powdery mildew is a significant problem wherever barley is grown around the world," says the lead researcher. "Growers with infected crops can expect up to 25% reductions in yield and the barley may also be downgraded from high quality malting barley to that of feed quality, with an associated loss in market value."

A scanning electron microscope image of a fungal haustorium (Blumeria graminis f. sp. hordei) taken from inside the barley epidermal cell.
Credit: Jamil Chowdhury

New research at the University of Adelaide has opened the way for the development of new lines of barley with resistance to powdery mildew.

Related Articles


In Australia, annual barley production is second only to wheat with 7-8 million tonnes a year. Powdery mildew is one of the most important diseases of barley.

Senior Research Scientist Dr Alan Little and team have discovered the composition of special growths on the cell walls of barley plants that block the penetration of the fungus into the leaf.

The research, by the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Cell Walls in the University's School of Agriculture, Food and Wine in collaboration with the Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research in Germany, will be presented at the upcoming 5th International Conference on Plant Cell Wall Biology and published in the journal New Phytologist.

"Powdery mildew is a significant problem wherever barley is grown around the world," says Dr Little. "Growers with infected crops can expect up to 25% reductions in yield and the barley may also be downgraded from high quality malting barley to that of feed quality, with an associated loss in market value.

"In recent times we've seen resistance in powdery mildew to the class of fungicide most commonly used to control the disease in Australia. Developing barley with improved resistance to the disease is therefore even more important."

The discovery means researchers have new targets for breeding powdery mildew resistant barley lines.

"Powdery mildew feeds on the living plant," says Dr Little. "The fungus spore lands on the leaf and sends out a tube-like structure which punches its way through cell walls, penetrating the cells and taking the nutrients from the plant. The plant tries to stop this penetration by building a plug of cell wall material -- a papillae -- around the infection site. Effective papillae can block the penetration by the fungus.

"It has long been thought that callose is the main polysaccharide component of papilla. But using new techniques, we've been able to show that in the papillae that block fungal penetration, two other polysaccharides are present in significant concentrations and play a key role.

"It appears that callose acts like an initial plug in the wall but arabinoxylan and cellulose fill the gaps in the wall and make it much stronger."

In his PhD project, Jamil Chowdhury showed that effective papillae contained up to four times the concentration of callose, arabinoxylan and cellulose as cell wall plugs which didn't block penetration.

"We can now use this knowledge find ways of increasing these polysaccharides in barley plants to produce more resistant lines available for growers," says Dr Little.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Adelaide. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Adelaide. "New hope for powdery mildew resistant barley." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140725080154.htm>.
University of Adelaide. (2014, July 25). New hope for powdery mildew resistant barley. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140725080154.htm
University of Adelaide. "New hope for powdery mildew resistant barley." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140725080154.htm (accessed November 26, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Classic Hollywood Memorabilia Goes Under the Hammer

Classic Hollywood Memorabilia Goes Under the Hammer

Reuters - Entertainment Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) The iconic piano from "Casablanca" and the Cowardly Lion suit from "The Wizard of Oz" fetch millions at auction. Sara Hemrajani reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Feast Your Eyes: Lamb Chop Sent Into Space from UK

Feast Your Eyes: Lamb Chop Sent Into Space from UK

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Nov. 25, 2014) Take a stab at this -- stunt video shows a lamb chop's journey from an east London restaurant over 30 kilometers into space. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
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