The title of his presentation was “wheat stem rust: battling an old foe with cloned resistance genes from wild relatives.” The basis of his research is on how microbial effector proteins, their host targets, and plant immune receptors co-evolve. Global wheat production is threatened by stem rust and other diseases and this has led to high wheat yield reductions. The Wulff group uses mutational genomics to isolate and study genes that restrict wheat stem rust and septoria disease in wheat. Their long term goal is to isolate multiple resistance (R) genes and deploy them in combinations as single loci or stacks which
have zero linkage drag and have a potent for more durable disease resistance. Thus, several new genes will be stacked together in the same location in the genome thus the new lines will have several stem rust genes at a single genetic locus.
Dr. Brande Wulff (4th left) with academic staff and graduate students of the Department of Plant Science and Crop Protection after his presentation