Welcome to the website for the Disease Resistance of Maize (DR Maize) project, which aims to advance knowledge on the genetics and mechanisms underlying quantitative disease resistance (QDR). Our long-term goal is to develop a holistic understanding of the biology of QDR so that novel solutions for disease control can be envisaged. Current research on this project integrates multiple scientific disciplines to identify causal variants underlying natural variation in resistance to fungal pathogens and elucidate their cellular and molecular modes of action.

This project is focused on Northern Leaf Blight (NLB) and Southern Leaf Blight (SLB), caused by Setosphaeria turcica and Cochliobolus heterostrophus, respectively. The primary objectives of the project are: (i) identification and validation of genes underlying variation in QDR to NLB and SLB; (ii) histological characterization of variation in fungal pathogenesis.

Funding: This work has been supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation Plant Genome Research Program IOS-1127076 (Genetic and Histological Dissection of Phenotypic Variation in Quantitative Disease Resistance)

Visualization of two separate penetration events into a maize leaf blade by C. heterostrophus

Minker et al. (2016) DOI: 10.1002/jemt.22709.