Location: Vegetable Crops Research Unit
Project Number: 3655-21000-062-12
Start Date: Apr 18, 2012
End Date: Aug 31, 2015
a. Develop a functional genomics platform: a CMV-based virus induced gene silencing (VIGS) system will be established in cucumber to validate candidate gene functions of the ZYMV resistance. b. Understand molecular interactions between the downy mildew pathogen and cucumber host. Work will include: (1) Genotyping of downy mildew isolates; (2) Establish a single cell blueprint of cucumber-downy mildew interactions; (3) Functional analysis of differentially expressed genes. c. Evaluate economic benefits of genetic improvements of disease resistance on commercial cucumber production. The economic evaluation team will provide economic impact assessments of the development of downy mildew resistant cultivars. This team will capitalize on strong industry (growers/processors) support for this research agenda by engaging key stakeholders in the research and outreach stages of this objective. The economic impact evaluation entails two states, Michigan and North Carolina, but will be fungible to other states. d. The outreach program will enhance communication with various segments of the industry, and educate the public on the need for sound scientific practices to resolve biological problems. The outreach target groups will include the cucumber growers, the private seed companies, cucumber scientific community, the youth and the general public.