Sammendrag

Plants are exposed to various pathogens in their environment and have developed immune systems with multiple layers of defence to fight-back. However, often pathogens overcome the resistance barriers, infect the plants to cause the disease. Pathogens that cause diseases on economically important crop plants like strawberry incur huge losses to the agriculture industry. For example, The 2016 outbreak of strawberry grey mould (Botrytis cinerea) in Norway caused up to 95% crop losses. Outbreaks like this underline the importance of developing novel and sustainable tools to combat plant diseases, for example by increasing the plants’ natural disease resistance. Priming plant defences using chemical elicitors may be effective in providing the enhanced resistance against multiple pathogens. We have used β-aminobutyric acid (BABA) as a chemical priming agent to induce resistance in Fragaria vesca against Botrytis cinerea. Effects of BABA on disease progression and defence responses of Fragaria are being characterized using molecular tools like RNAseq, RT-PCR and ChIP. As priming chemicals may induce an epigenetic memory in treated plants, we also plan to study the histone methylation patterns in primed plants and the genes that are regulated. Our long-term aim is to understand the duration of the epigenetic memory and its cross-generational transmission to the progeny in Fragaria. Our results will help guide various crop protection strategies in addition to providing new insights to develop novel tools for plant disease management.

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Sammendrag

Plant research and breeding has a long and successful history in the Scandinavian countries, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. Researchers in the region have been early in adopting plant gene technologies as they developed. This review gives a background, as well as discuss the current and future progress of plant gene technology in these four countries. Country-specific details of the regulation of genetically modified plants are described, as well as similarities and differences in the approach to regulation of novel genome-editing techniques. Also, the development of a sustainable bioeconomy may encompass the application of plant gene technology and we discuss whether or not this is reflected in current associated national strategies. In addition, country-specific information about the opinion of the public and other stakeholders on plant gene technology is presented, together with a country-wise political comparison and a discussion of the potential reciprocal influence between public opinion and the political process of policy development. The Scandinavian region is unique in several aspects, such as climate and certain agriculturally related regulations, and at the same time the region is vulnerable to changes in plant breeding investments due to the relatively small market sizes. It is therefore important to discuss the role and regulation of innovative solutions in Scandinavian plant research and breeding.

Sammendrag

Redigering av gener gjer at vi står framfor ein heilt ny debatt om bioteknologi, seier Bioteknologirådets leiar Kristin Halvorsen.

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Vaksinering av isbergsalat


Skadedyr og sykdommer ødelegger 20-40 % av verdens plantebaserte matproduksjon og for enkelte vekster er tapene enda høyere. Det viktigste tiltaket for å redusere avlingstap har vært å bruke kjemiske plantevernmidler og resistente sorter, men til tross for disse tiltakene holder tapene seg stabilt høye. Dette skyldes blant annet at mange skadegjørere har utviklet resistens mot plantevernmidler og tilpasset seg forsvarssystemet i de resistente plantesortene. For isbergssalat er det spesielt soppene storknolla råtesopp, salatbladskimmel og gråskimmel som er problematiske i denne sammenheng. Det er derfor behov for nye effektive og miljøvennlige alternativer til sprøyting med kjemikalier. Alle planter har et naturlig immunforsvar som varierer fra sort til sort og som aktiveres når de utsettes for insektangrep eller soppinfeksjon. Et lovende alternativ til sprøyting kan være å stimulere dette immunforsvaret med ufarlige stoffer før plantene utsettes for smitte, likt det man gjør for å vaksinerte mennesker og dyr. Slik «vaksinering» kan beskytte plantene mot angrep senere i livet. Vi forventer at salatplanter med stimulert immunforsvar vil være mer motstandsdyktige enn ubehandlede kontrollplanter. Vi håper også å finne positive synergistiske effekter av å behandle med elicitor og mikroorganismer kombinert. 

Aktiv Sist oppdatert: 21.01.2019
Slutt: des 2020
Start: okt 2018
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Beyond the genome: epigenetics of defense priming and climatic adaptation in plants


In this project we study epigenetic modifications involved in defenses priming against pests and pathogens and climatic adaptation in plants. These are novel research questions of great interest, both from a basic scientific perspective and from a climate change and crop protection perspective. Healthy, vigorous plants with flexible phenotypes that are well adapted to shifting environmental conditions provide better yield and more efficient carbon sequestration from the atmosphere, with less pesticide use. Understanding the molecular mechanisms of the epigenetic machinery will help inform how epigenetics may be exploited in plant breeding and crop management practices.

Aktiv Sist oppdatert: 13.10.2017
Slutt: juli 2021
Start: juli 2016