Research press release


Nature Biotechnology

Crop-infesting worm sequenced




科学者チームは、この線虫の遠い親戚にあたり、発生生物学者たちによって詳しく研究されている非寄生性の線虫C. elegansについての知見を参考にして、植物の根をのっとって利用するというサツマイモネコブセンチュウ特有の能力について明らかにした。C. elegansの生存に必要であることが知られていて、しかもサツマイモネコブセンチュウにも存在する遺伝子は、より環境にやさしい線虫対策の優れた標的になる可能性がある。

The genetic makeup of a plant-parasitic nematode worm is revealed online this week in Nature Biotechnology. It is the first genome of a multicellular animal known to be a plant parasite and offers an initial glimpse into animal life without sex―males of this species of root knot nematode make no genetic contribution to reproduction.

Parasitic roundworms cause global crop losses amounting to around ?100 ($157) billion annually and the chemicals used to control them are notoriously toxic to humans and the environment.

A consortium of 54 scientists from 27 laboratories in Europe and the USA has sequenced and analyzed the genome of the Southern root-knot nematode―a particularly destructive microscopic worm capable of infesting the roots of many important crops, including tomato, cotton and coffee.

The team relied substantially on knowledge of C. elegans―a distant non-parasitic relative studied intensively by developmental biologists?in discerning the unique aptitudes of the worm for hijacking plant roots for its own benefit. Genes known to be essential for survival of C. elegans and which are also found in the nematode may be excellent targets for more environment-friendly nematode control strategies.

doi: 10.1038/nbt.1482


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