Leveraging primary dihaploid genetics to elucidate Blackleg Soft Rot resistance in the Caribou Russet Cultivar

Tuesday, July 27, 2021
12:30 PM - 12:45 PM


Potato blackleg soft rot (PBSR) is a bacterial vascular disease with a broad host range, among them potato. The incidence of PBSR is typically low in the United States, however, the Northeast experienced an outbreak in 2015 which comprised potato farms and seed plots. There are limited control measures for this disease other than cultural practices such as avoidance and certified seed programs. Blackleg can pose a serious economic threat to growers in multiple forms of loss, such as poor stand emergence, reduced productivity of the field, and storage losses if not detected. Furthermore the disease can be perpetuated year by year through continued planting of saved asymptomatic seed stock from the previous season. Currently, there are no commercial varieties that are resistant to PBSR, despite resistance having been observed in a handful of varieties (Czajkowski, 2011; Zimnoch-Guzowska et al., 1999; Lebecka, 2020; Thangavel et al., 2014). Of these varieties, the recently released Caribou Russet has been identified as having a high level of resistance to PBSR. Research into the phenomenon of haploid induction, and how this biological process may be leveraged for diploid potato variety improvement has extended the capabilities of researchers not just for breeding, but also for dissecting the genetics behind desirable agronomic traits such as resistance to potato diseases such as PBSR. Through the use of a primary dihaploid potato population derived from Caribou Russet, we seek to uncover the genetic basis of resistance to Dickeya dianthicola isolate ME30, a causative agent of PBSR. Under this overarching goal, Caribou Russet primary dihaploids will be screened for PBSR resistance and association mapping performed.

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