Expanding BnVQs (Valene-Glutamine) gene family against Sclerotinia sclerotiorum in canola

View all Projects

Project Details

Principal Investigators

Additional Investigators

Start Date

External Resources

SaskCanola summary

Key Result

This project is still in progress, but aims to screen sclerotinia resistance in B. napus genotypes and characterize the BnVQ genes that may play an important role in conferring resistance. This project will examine B. napus genotypes for sclerotinia resistance, and profile BnVQ genes and other associated genes for their role in providing enhanced resistance. Based on this information, gene edited canola lines will be developed that have overexpressed genes conferring enhanced resistance.

Project Summary

Two of the researchers in this project are also working together in the Digging out the unknown: Finding the resistance against verticillium stripe in canola project, to identify novel resistance loci/genes against the emerging disease verticillium stripe in canola using genome-wide association study. Brassica napus genotypes panel including differential lines having resistance genes to blackleg, introgression lines, breeding lines, commercial varieties, as well as several semi-winter canola varieties is being used to evaluate their resistance to V. longisporum. The research team previously identified 118 BnVQs genes in B. napus genome, and overexpression of one of them (BnVQ7 or BnMKS1) in Westar showed enhanced disease resistance to blackleg and sclerotinia stem rot disease.
Thus, the research team will try to expand their knowledge to screen SSR resistance in B. napus genotypes, and characterize the critical BnVQ genes that play important roles in canola against SSR disease. Using advanced molecular biotechnological tools, the research team will produce overexpression and CRISPR/Cas9 edited canola lines with improved disease resistance.

More specifically, this project will involve:

1) screening resistance of B. napus genotypes against sclerotinia stem rot disease

2) investigating genome-wide expression of BnVQ genes in susceptible and screened resistance canola lines

3) based on the significantly expressed BnVQs in response to S. sclerotiorum infection, apply overexpression and multiplex CRISPR genome editing to produce the transgenic canola lines having enhanced SSR resistance

4) produce DNA free pre-breeding lines by segregating out the CRISPR/Cas9 vector in transgenic canola lines through crossing

5) identify novel candidate genes associated with BnVQs that can improve canola resistance to SSR disease.

Overall, this project will benefit the whole seed industry, growers, and canola trade organizations, and provide an immense economic contribution to the Canadian economy (in yearly revenues).