Molecular Basis of Disease in a Virus-Infected Plant Pathogenic Fungus

  • Ghabrial, Said (PI)

Grants and Contracts Details


Virus-induced diseases and hypovirulence in plant pathogenic fungi provide excellent opportunities for fundamental studies aimed at developing novel biological control measures. In this regard, the dsRNA totivirus (Helminthosporium victoriae 1905virus; HvI90SY) and associated chrysovirus-like Hv145SY infecting the Victoria blight fungus Helminthosporium I victoriae are of special interest because they are associated with a dIsease of their fungal host. The overall goal of the project is to elucidate the molecular basis of disease in H. victoriae with emphasis on a recently discovered novel cellular oxidase (Hv-p68) with RNA-binding and phosphorylating activities that is overexpressed in diseased fungal isolates, and on a broadspectrum antifungal polypeptide "victoriocin" secreted by virus-infected isolates. The specific aims are: to elucidate the genome organization and expression of Hv 145SY, to transform virusfree H. victoriae with full length cDNA clones of Hv190SY and Hvl45SY dsRNAs, to disrupt the Hv-p68 gene in virus-infected isolates, and to isolate the gene encoding victoriocin. At the present time, control of plant pathogenic fungi is a formidable task due to the lack of appropriate disease control strategies. In addition to the health hazards and the risks to the environment, the use of fungicides is often cost-prohibitive. The need for novel biological control measures to combat fungal diseases cannot be overstated. The proposed research seeks to pursue two novel approaches: activation of a cellular protein leading to a diseased phenotype, and transgenic resistance to fungal pathogens through plant transformation with a gene encoding a "rI-sDectrum antifumml DolvDeDtide.
Effective start/end date11/15/006/30/04


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.