MU Researchers Transplanting Protein Strain in Other Plants

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COLUMBIA - MU researchers at the Bond Life Sciences Center are investigating the immune-building effects of the protein strain Enhanced Disease Susceptibility 1 (EDS1) to see if it can be transplanted to protect other plants.

Working with Arabidopsis, a variety of mustard plant, researchers now know that EDS1 can detect pathogenic agents within a plant's immune system. Within the near future, researchers hope to be able to transplant this protein into other plants for the same pathogenic-fending purposes.

If successful, some plants like soybeans, grapevines and wheat would be subject to using this protein, which may ultimately result in producing more food with less costly pesticides.

"With that understanding, we can try to engineer that type of resistance in plants that have EDS1, but that don't have a sentinel that protects eds1 from pathogen attack," says MU Plant Studies researcher Walter Gassmann.

"That is just one thing that might come out of this study," Gassmann said.