Chinese Bulletin of Botany ›› 2020, Vol. 55 ›› Issue (2): 123-125.DOI: 10.11983/CBB20060

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Fighting Fusarium Head Blight in Wheat—a Remedy from Afar

Jian-Min Zhou()   

  1. State Key Laboratory of Plant Genomics, Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
  • Received:2020-04-09 Accepted:2020-04-09 Online:2020-03-01 Published:2020-04-10
  • Contact: Jian-Min Zhou


Fusarium head blight (FHB) caused by Fusarium graminearum is a devastating disease on wheat not only because of severe yield loss, but also contamination of the grain with deadly mycotoxin. A recent study significantly advanced our understanding how wheat plants can be protected by resistance genes and provided tools in the fight against a major disease. A team led by Prof. Kong in Shandong Agricultural University successfully identified an important FHB resistance gene, Fhb7, and illuminated a mechanism by which this gene might have evolved in plants and a mechanism by which the resistance protein overcome the pathogen. This is an elegant study that not only opens new window to our understanding of plant-pathogen co-evolution, but also allows us to better utilize the rich gene resources of Thinopyrum elongatum for effective breeding of FHB resistance and other traits in wheat.

Key words: Fusarium head blight, wheat, disease resistance gene, DON, horizontal gene transfer