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Resistance to Verticillium in Tomatoes: the Root-Stem Controversy

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Title: Resistance to Verticillium in Tomatoes: the Root-Stem Controversy
Author: Mackey, Melora
Department: Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology
Program: Molecular and Cellular Biology
Advisor: Robb, Jane
Abstract: Verticillium is a soil-borne fungus that is one of the world's foremost plant pathogens. Commercial plant grafting suggests that resistance occurs in the root; this conflicts with decades of research indicating that resistance occurs in the stem. The goal of this thesis work was to use an alternative approach to determine the location of resistance by expressing the Ve1 gene using organ-specific promoters. Promoter sequences for the stem-specific gene, Ribulose 1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase oxygenase small chain 2A (Rbsc2A), and root-specific gene, Tobacco Mosaic Virus Induced (TMVi) were taken from the Sol Genomics Network (SGN) database, cloned into constructs with the Ve1 gene and susceptible tomato germplasm was transformed using Agrobacterium tumefaciens. Preliminary results suggest that resistance may not be localized and expression of the Ve1 gene in either the root or the stem is sufficient to develop whole plant resistance to the Verticillium pathogen.
Date: 2013-12
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