The role of secreted effector proteins from the apple scab fungus (Venturia inaequalis; Vi), alongside the interactions of this fungus with other microorganisms that occupy the apple leaf phyllosphere, are explored in this research.
Using transcriptomic and metagenomic analyses, this project focuses on better understanding the influence that Vi effector proteins have on the apple phyllosphere and leaf litter microbiota during transition from biotrophic to saprophytic growth and sexual reproduction.
Through this project, the researchers aim to identify and purify several candidate antimicrobial effector proteins (AEPs) from Vi to characterise their roles in mediating antagonistic Vi–microbe interactions.
In addition to providing information on how fungal pathogens manipulate the microbiota of their plant hosts and environment, findings should aid in the identification of fungal AEPs that can be trialed for the control of pathogens associated with plants with economic, horticultural/agricultural, and cultural significance to Aotearoa New Zealand.
Why This Matters
This research aims to characterise the interactions between Vi and apple phyllosphere and leaf litter microbiota. It also aims to characterise the role candidate AEPs have in mediating antagonistic Vi–microbe interactions.
Developing a better understanding of these interactions could enable the discovery of novel antimicrobials for application against other plant pathogens of interest to Aotearoa New Zealand.
- Determine the influence that Vi has on the apple leaf microbiota, with a particular emphasis on the sexual reproductive life cycle stage.
- Understand the role of Vi plant natriuretic peptide-like (PNPL) and KP6-like AEP candidate effector family members in antagonistic Vi–microbe interactions.
Strangers or co-conspirators? The co-occurring pathogens that occupy the soil below diseased kauri trees
Kauri dieback is the common term for the disease that is killing kauri trees here in Aotearoa New Zealand. The scientific name for the pathogen that causes the disease is Phytophthora agathidicida….