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October 21, 2021

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Uncovering secrets of rice defense

After researching for 15 years and analyzing more than 3,000 rice varieties, Chinese scientists have revealed the novel mechanism involved in rice’s defense against pathogens.

Rice yield and quality are severely affected by diseases; thus a major goal of rice breeding is to achieve broad-spectrum disease resistance without a reduction in yield.

The research team, led by Professor He Zuhua, has made a great breakthrough regarding the molecular mechanisms that coordinate rice disease resistance and growth fitness.

They have discovered for the first time a novel calcium sensor, named ROD1 (resistance of rice to diseases 1) that balances rice immune homeostasis and inflorescence meristem growth.

The findings were published in the leading journal Cell.


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