Submitted to: Mycopathologia
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: March 31, 2006
Publication Date: August 31, 2006
Citation: Brown, D.W., Butchko, R.A., Proctor, R. 2006. Fusarium genomic resources: tools to limit crop diseases and mycotoxin contamination. Mycopathologia. 162:191-199. Interpretive Summary: The genus Fusarium includes numerous plant pathogens that cause destructive diseases on some of the world’s most agriculturally important plant species, including corn, wheat, potato, cassava, palm, banana, pine, and numerous vegetables. Different types of genomic information are important tools to help understand how fungi infect plants, cause disease and synthesize mycotoxins. Genomic tools include the complete nucleotide sequence of a fungus, expressed sequence tags (ESTs), and genetic maps of the fungus that describe physical distances between genes on or between chromosomes. A better understanding of these fungus and its relationship with its host will help to limit the losses suffered each year by farmers due to fungi. This paper reviews genomic resources for Fusarium graminearum and F. verticillioides that are available to researchers today. We provide examples from work in our labs about how we are applying genomic technologies to meet our goal to understand how these fungi synthesis toxins and how they cause disease.
Technical Abstract: It has been almost ten years since Joan Bennett suggested that fungal biologists create a "wish list" for fungal genome sequences (Bennett 1997). Today, over 200 review papers concerning "fungal genomics" are available. While much progress has been made, the use of genomic data to study mycotoxins, pathogenesis and other aspects of fungal biology still seems as if it is in the early stages. Here we briefly present the status of publicly available genomic resources for Fusarium, a genus of important plant pathogens and mycotoxin producers of world-wide concern.