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Resistance switch to powdery mildew identified

Researchers from German university Technische Universitaet Muenchen (TUM) have identified two proteins in barley that facilitate the “hostile takeover” of plant cells by powdery mildew ( Blumeria graminis). The proteins, RACB and MAGAP1, steer development processes in the plant cell. RACB is involved in enlarging the plant cell surface during the growth process while MAGAP1 serves as its counter and can prevent or locally limit these activities in the cell. The fungus “reprogrammes” cells in such a way that they adapt their architecture and metabolism to accommodate and even foster it by supplying it with nutrients, the researchers point out.

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