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Deep inside anthracnose: identification of soybean resistance markers by GWAS, use of comparative genomics to study the adaptation of Colletotrichum truncatum to the host, phylogeny and pathogenicity of new Colletotrichum species

Grant number: 21/11356-7
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: July 01, 2022 - December 31, 2024
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Agronomy - Plant Health
Principal Investigator:Nelson Sidnei Massola Júnior
Grantee:Nelson Sidnei Massola Júnior
Host Institution: Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALQ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Piracicaba , SP, Brazil
Associated researchers: Francismar Corrêa Marcelino Guimarães ; Maisa Ciampi Guillardi ; Raissa Debacker Moura ; Thaís Regina Boufleur


Soybean losses due to biotic diseases can directly impact food security due to its global importance and multiple uses as human and animal feed. Anthracnose is caused by several species of the genus Colletotrichum, with C. truncatum and C. orchidearum being the most representative complexes. While studies related to C. truncatum have advanced in recent years, the understanding of the interaction between soybean and species of the C. orchidearum complex (C. musicola, C. plurivorum and C. sojae) are still in its infancy. Our data indicate that the four Colletotrichum species belong to two distinct lineages, which do not share previously identified specific candidate effectors (2017/09178-8), and that the two pathogenic lineages acquired the ability to infect soybean independently, emphasizing the importance of correct identification of species present in soybean fields for proper disease management. Thus, this project aims to: (i) investigate whether the evolution of C. truncatum was driven by the host through comparative genomic analyzes of stains obtained from soybean and from pepper, which may reveal gene repertoires related to the adaptation of fungi to distinct hosts; (ii) identify genetic markers by genomic wide association studies (GWAS), which can be used in soybean breeding programs for anthracnose resistance; (iii) perform molecular and pathogenic characterization of a collection of Colletotrichum strains to clarify the diversity of species associated with anthracnose in Brazil. Understanding the evolution of the pathosystem will contribute to the identification of genes related to the pathogenicity of Colletotrichum species associated with anthracnose and to obtain soybean cultivars with more durable resistance to the disease. (AU)

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