The genetic basis of resistance to downy mildew in Cucumis spp.—latest developments and prospects

Helena Olczak-Woltman, Joanna Marcinkowska, Katarzyna Niemirowicz-Szczytt
Journal of Applied Genetics 2011, 52 (3): 249-55
Downy mildew, caused by the Oomycete pathogen Pseudoperonospora cubensis, is one of the most destructive diseases of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) and muskmelon (C. melo L.). Although the process of pathogenesis is well understood, there are few disease control options available. The development and deployment of resistant cultivars is generally considered to be the best approach to control downy mildew. The recently completed sequencing of the cucumber genome provides a great opportunity for reliable and thorough study of the sequence and function of resistance genes in the Cucurbitaceae, which will help us to understand the resistance mechanisms and metabolic pathways activated by these genes. It can be anticipated that, in the near future, we will have more information about the genetic bases of resistance to downy mildew in Cucumis, which will facilitate efforts to breed for resistance to this pathogen.

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