© Daria Chrobok, DC SciArt

Crop: Barley (Hordeum vulgare)
Property: Resistance to the yellow dwarf virus

Yellow dwarf viruses are amongst the most widespread plant viruses in the world. Typical symptoms include small foci of affected plants with yellow-red foliage and dwarfism. The disease can lead to a significant loss of yield. The virus is transmitted via aphids or leafhoppers, but symptoms do not appear until spring in fields that have not been treated against contaminated insects in the preceding fall. Since viruses cannot be fought directly, control focuses on the vectors, in this case the amphids. Delayed planting limits the risk of insect infestation but exacerbates the risk of yield losses and difficulties for sowing due to increased rainfall in autumn. However, once insect infestation has occurred, insecticides need to be applied to prevent the spread of the virus. The amount of insecticide used could be minimized by using seed treatments before planting, but effective neonicotinoid products were banned in Europe in 2018. As an alternative approach, Hungarian researchers at the Agricultural Biotechnology Institute used the CRISPR/Cas method to generate barley plants with effective resistance to the yellow dwarf virus by introducing a point mutation into its genome.


TitleCreating highly efficient resistance against wheat dwarf virus in barley by employing CRISPR/Cas9 system
AuthorsAndràs Kis et al.
JournalPlant Biotechnology Journal