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A Genome-Wide Meta-Analysis of Rice Blast Resistance Genes and Quantitative Trait Loci Provides New Insights into Partial and Complete Resistance

July 2008 , Volume 21 , Number  7
Pages  859 - 868

Elsa Ballini,1 Jean-Benoît Morel,2 Gaétan Droc,3 Adam Price,4 Brigitte Courtois,5 Jean-Loup Notteghem,5 and Didier Tharreau1

1CIRAD and 2INRA, UMR BGPI, CIRAD-INRA-SupAgro.M, TA A 54/K, 34398 Montpellier Cedex, France; 3CIRAD, UMR DAP, CIRAD-INRA-UM2, TA A 96/03, 34398 Montpellier Cedex, France; 4School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB24 3UU, U.K.; 5Montpellier SupAgro, UMR BGPI, CIRAD-INRA-SupAgro.M, TA A 54/K, 34398 Montpellier Cedex, France

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Accepted 6 March 2008.

The completion of the genome sequences of both rice and Magnaporthe oryzae has strengthened the position of rice blast disease as a model to study plant--pathogen interactions in monocotyledons. Genetic studies of blast resistance in rice were established in Japan as early as 1917. Despite such long-term study, examples of cultivars with durable resistance are rare, partly due to our limited knowledge of resistance mechanisms. A rising number of blast resistance genes and quantitative trait loci (QTL) have been genetically described, and some have been characterized during the last 20 years. Using the rice genome sequence, can we now go a step further toward a better understanding of the genetics of blast resistance by combining all these results? Is such knowledge appropriate and sufficient to improve breeding for durable resistance? A review of bibliographic references identified 85 blast resistance genes and approximately 350 QTL, which we mapped on the rice genome. These data provide a useful update on blast resistance genes as well as new insights to help formulate hypotheses about the molecular function of blast QTL, with special emphasis on QTL for partial resistance. All these data are available from the OrygenesDB database.

Additional keywords:colocalization, defense, metaQTL, Oryza sativa.

© 2008 The American Phytopathological Society