Abstract SFB F37 Fusarium
The fungus Fusarium graminearum infects worldwide crops of central importance such as corn and wheat, and contaminates by secreted toxins food and feed. The aim of the research of the SFB F37 is to utilize the rapidly advancing tools of genomics, transcriptomics and metabolomics to improve the understanding of the complex relationship between cereals and the broad host range fungal pathogen Fusarium graminearum.
Cereal plants and parasitic fungi are engaged in a race in which infection strategies of the fungi compete with plant resistance mechanisms. Fusarium graminearum exploits the effect of toxins to weaken plant cells and evade the immune system of the plant. Previous research showed a bitter feud between the plant and fungus including chemical attacks, detoxification and deception strategies. The SFB combines research groups with proven expertise in leading-edge biological fields. The aim is to use research on virulence mechanisms and to get this information to the breeding of resistant varieties. The exploration of the interaction mechanisms of the two organisms, will allow us to design interventions to tip the balance in favour of the crop.