The introgressed segment carrying rust resistance genes Yr17, Lr37 and Sr38 in wheat can be assayed by a cloned disease resistance gene-like sequence
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A cloned gene sequence (Vrga1D), with features of the nucleotide-binding-site leucine-rich repeat class of disease resistance (R) gene sequence super family, was previously shown to belong to a family of five gene members derived from a Triticum ventricosum Ces. (syn. Aegilops ventricosa Tausch) segment in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). This gene family was introgressed, together with the linked rust resistance genes Yr17, Lr37 and Sr38 from T. ventricosum, to wheat chromosome 2AS. An independently derived T. ventricosum segment carrying a leaf rust resistance gene in a French wheat cultivar, was shown to exhibit a rust resistance response equivalent to Lr37 as well as Yr17 and Sr38. DNA probes from different regions of the Vrga1D clone consistently detected the presence of RFLPs associated with the introgressed segment carrying the resistance genes Yr17, Lr37 and Sr38 present in diverse wheat genotypes from Australia, Canada, France and the UK. Our results showed that the transfer of the T. ventricosum- derived Vrga1 gene members and the rust resistance genes were always accompanied by the loss of a corresponding set of Vrga1-related gene members in recipient wheat cultivars presumed to be of homoeoallelic origin. A PCR assay, based on sequences from the 3"-untranslated region of a Vrga1 gene member isolated from the T. ventricosum donor line of the introgressed segment, was developed. The PCR assay detected the presence of the introgressed rust resistance genes across the diverse wheat backgrounds and should be useful in marker- assisted selection in wheat breeding.
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