Crop Biotech Update

Researchers Find Genetic Cause for Citrus Canker

February 5, 2014

Researchers from the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences at the University of Florida are one step closer to finding a possible cure for citrus canker after discovering a gene that makes citrus trees susceptible to the pathogen.

Citrus canker is caused by the bacteria Xanthomonas citri. The research team led by Yang Hu, a former doctoral student in plant pathology, found the critical trait in the bacterium that is necessary for disease development. While studying the bacterial pathogen's role in infected citrus, researchers were able to identify a gene in citrus critical to the development of citrus canker, known as the susceptibility, or "S" gene. By finding the susceptibility gene, researchers say they are closer to a cure for the disease as the S gene makes it possible to design multiple strategies for disease control.

For more information, read the news release available at: http://news.ufl.edu/2014/01/30/canker-gene/.