By admin       2016-10-05

A Chinese research group has used gene technology for controlling a major disease of cotton plants and successfully cultivated a new species of cotton that boasts increased resistance to verticillium dahliae (V.dahliae), a vascular fungal pathogen. The new species of cotton is 22.25 per cent more resistant to the disease, called cotton cancer in China.The new cotton species has showed resistant to the disease in the field that contains various types of fungi, says the research published in the Nature Plants journal. Its gene interference technology successfully prevents a pathogenic fungus that causes the V.dahliae wilt disease, according to Institute of Microbiology of Chinese Academy of Sciences (IMCAS) website.The group of Chinese researchers who developed the new cotton species was led by Guo Hui-Shan, principal investigator at IMCAS. They worked for eight years to discover how the cotton plant is infected by the fungus and found a solution for this disease that affected over 50 per cent of the cotton crop in Xinjiang Province, China.It was really time-consuming to generate the cottons stably expressing specific sRNAs, but we obtained them finally and luckily these cottons showed resistance to the wilt disease, said Hui-Shan.China is the world s largest producer of cotton and yields 6 to 8 million tons cotton every year, amounting to 30 per cent of the total world production.

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