Pathogen Ecological Genetics

back to Projects main pageharvesting BFOD conidia

Principal Investigator: Dr. David Boose
Co-PI's: Dr. Susan Meyer, Dr. Mikel Stevens
Technical Support: Suzette Clement, Kedra Foote, Steven Harrison, Erin Heckaman
Student:  Marcus Soliai

BFOD disease surveySteven finally escapes from lab

Suzette harvesting conidia

map of BFOD locations surveyed

Steven is finally allowed to leave the genetics lab

We have used molecular markers developed from the genome sequencing project  to genetically characterize pathogen populations on cheatgrass from across the Intermountain West and also on cheatgrass in Eurasia, on other weedy grasses, and on native grasses.

We have learned that pathogen populations on cheatgrass most likely hitch-hiked along with cheatgrass seeds from Eurasia. Although the sexual stage is rarely observed, our genetic data indicate that it regularly occurs in populations on cheatgrass in the Intermountain West.

Meyer, SE, Beckstead, J, Allen PS, Smith DC. 2008. A seed bank pathogen causes seedborne disease: Pyrenophora semeniperda on undispersed grass seeds in western North America. Can. J. Plant Path. 30:525-533.

Stewart, TE, Meyer SE, Allen PS. 2009. First report of Pyrenophora semeniperda in Turkey and Greece.
Plant Disease Reporter 93:1351.

Boose D, Harrison S, Clement S, Meyer S. 2011. Population genetic structure of the seed pathogen
Pyrenophora semeniperda on Bromus tectorum in western North America. Mycologia 103:85-93.

Studies of population genetic structure help us understand pathogen distribution, origins, and mating system.

What it's about


What we did

What we found out