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RNA-Mediated Gene Silencing of Superoxide Dismutase (bcsod1) in Botrytis cinerea

December 2008 , Volume 98 , Number  12
Pages  1,334 - 1,339

R. M. Patel, J. A. L. van Kan, A. M. Bailey, and G. D. Foster

First, third, and fourth authors: School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, BS8 1UG, UK; and second author: Laboratory of Phytopathology, Wageningen University Plant Sciences, The Netherlands.

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Accepted for publication 21 August 2008.

Gene silencing is a powerful tool utilized for identification of gene function and analysis in plants, animals, and fungi. Here, we report the silencing of superoxide dismutase (bcsod1) in Botrytis cinerea through sense and antisense-mediated silencing mechanisms. Because superoxide dismutase (SOD) is a virulence factor, transformants were tested for phenotypic silencing in vitro and reduction in pathogenicity in planta. Plate-based assays with and without paraquat were performed to screen initial silencing efficiency, and a subset of transformants was used for in planta studies of virulence. Transformants exhibiting strongly decreased transcripts levels were recovered with both constructs but none of those exhibited a reduction in virulence in planta. Our investigations may help optimize a high-throughput gene silencing system useful for identifying potential gene targets for future fungal control.

Additional keywords:posttranscriptional gene silencing, RNAi.

© 2008 The American Phytopathological Society