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Abstract Detail


DAS, SUMANJARI [1], Creamer, Rebecca [2].

RNAi mediated silencing of swnT altered fungal growth and affects pathogenesis in the filamentous fungus Slafractonia leguminicola.

Slafractonia leguminicola (=Rhizoctonia leguminicola) infects red clover plants (Trifolium pretense L.) and other legumes causing black patch disease. This fungal pathogen, Slafractonia leguminicola, produces two toxins: slaframine and swainsonine, that are harmful to livestock grazing on clover hay or pasture infested with the fungus. The mycotoxin slaframine is responsible for the Slobbers syndrome mostly in horses. Symptoms of slobbers include excessive salivation, diarrhea, frequent urination, loss of appetite, and even death in acute cases. The other mycotoxin swainsonine causes serious livestock poisoning called locoism which is a serious problem in the western United States. Locoism symptoms include behavioral depression, staggering walk, lack of muscle coordination, difficulty in eating or drinking, infertility, abortion, and congestive heart failure. The objective of this research is to characterize a putative transporter swnT that helps to transport these mycotoxins out from the fungal cell to the media. swnT was silenced by RNA interference (RNA-i) using the silencing vector Psilent1. This resulted in a 70-80% reduction in the swnT transcript levels compared to the controls. Silenced mutants (DswnT) showed visibly different phenotypes than the wild type mycelia. The mutant mycelia were much thicker and shorter compared to the wild type when grown in the culture plates (potato dextrose agar). This may be because the toxins were accumulated in the mycelia and were unable to be transported out due to the silencing of the transporter gene. Mutants (DswnT) were also unable to infect (or very slow infection rate) in the detached leaves, unlike the controls, suggesting that swnT function might play an important role in pathogenesis in addition to toxin transportation.

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1 - New Mexico State University, Biology, 900 Mormon Drive, Apt A14, Las Cruces, NM, 88011, United States
2 - New Mexico State University, EPPWS, Las Cruces, NM, 88011, United States

Plant-fungal interaction
black patch
toxin transporter

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: MYP3, Mycology Posters III
Location: /
Date: Wednesday, July 21st, 2021
Time: 5:00 PM(EDT)
Number: MYP3006
Abstract ID:436
Candidate for Awards:MSA Best Poster Presentation Award by a Graduate Student

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