Rust-resistance genes in soybeans identified

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					          inform June 2009, Vol. 20 (6)                  371                                            the third quarter of 2009. Among the
                                                                                                        crops slated for planting are soybean
                                                                                                        and sunflower.
       Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, an inter-
       national agreement governing the move-
       ment of many kinds of GMO. Researchers
       from New Zealand, Norway, Solomon
       Islands, Malaysia, Argentina, Brazil,
       Mexico, France, and Germany contributed
       to the BAT, and the product was reviewed
       by researchers and regulatory officials in
       additional countries, including Iran, the
       United Kingdom, Portugal, and Ghana.
       During its advanced development phase, it
       has been used to support training of regu-
       lators, civil society leaders, policymakers,
       journalists, and researchers who take part
       in the International Biosafety Course held
       annually in Tromsø, Norway.
             “The BAT is a living resource,” accord-
       ing to the leader of the project’s interna-
       tional and interdisciplinary team, molecular
       biologist Jack Heinemann, of the Univer-
       sity of Canterbury in New Zealand. “The          Phakopsora pachyrhizi, which causes                              nnn
       BAT has feedback provisions so that it can       Asian soybean rust (ASR). ASR was first         Syngenta (Basel, Switzerland) and
       continue to evolve and improve. A team of        detected in the continental United States in    Dow AgroSciences, a wholly owned
       researchers remains in place to grow the         2004. Although fungicide use is effective       subsidiary of The Dow Chemical
       already comprehensive coverage of hazard         against ASR, providing farmers with resis-      Co., recently announced an agree-
       identification, risk-problem formulation         tant cultivars is more sustainable, according
                                                                                                        ment to cross-license their respec-
       and evaluation, and to make the BAT more         to geneticist Michelle Graham. She is with
                                                                                                        tive corn traits for commercialization
       interactive” Heinemann said.                     the ARS Corn Insects and Crop Genetics
                                                                                                        within their branded seed businesses.
             The BAT is designed for use by those       Research Unit in Ames.
       with a technical background as well as                Genetic mapping previously linked
                                                                                                        Under the terms of the agreement,
       those who are new to the science behind          ASR resistance to five DNA regions, or          Syngenta will receive global nonexclu-
       GMO and their evaluation. The tool is            loci, within the soybean genome, named          sive licenses, with stacking rights, to
       organized as chapters ranging from expla-        Rpp1 through Rpp5. Screening of 15,000          Dow AgroSciences’ Herculex® I Insect
       nations of molecular methods and biostatis-      accessions in the ARS soybean germplasm         Protection for broad lepidopteran
       tics to subsequent chapters specializing in      collection revealed how uncommon resis-         control and to Herculex RW for cor
Description: A team of scientists from the USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS), Iowa State University (ISU; Ames, USA), and Brazil have identified a cluster of soybean genes that provide resistance to the fungus Phakopsora pachyrhizi, which causes Asian soybean rust (ASR).
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