The National Sclerotinia Initiative (NSI) has attracted competitive research proposals each year, which are reflected in results to date. Research and technology transfer activities have led to numerous achievements in genetics and breeding, disease epidemiology and crop management practices - all which are important to growers, researchers and agribusinesses. Achievements include:
- Development of a sclerotinia risk map for dry bean producers and continued validation and expansion of risk maps for canola.
- Identification and characterization of two genes that confer partial resistance to white mold in common beans.
- Verified high levels of white mold resistance in more than 20 known and two new Phaseolus coccineus accessions.
- Investigation of the biochemical basis of white mold resistance in dry beans and identification of oxalate sensitivity as a means to distinguish white mold susceptibility in bean lines.
- Identification of canola cultivars with improved tolerance to white mold and establishment of a comprehensive website (www.whitemoldresearch.com) about the NSI.
- Identification of six lentil cultivars and one breeding line with relative resistance to white mold.
- Determination of effective fungicides for management of sclerotinia head rot in sunflowers and dry edible beans.
- Identification and evaluation of a biological control agent that shows promise in managing white mold in various crops.
- Identification of wild sunflower accessions suspected to have genetic resistance to sclerotinia.
- Transgenic expression of a broad-spectrum antifungal peptide in soybean that confers resistance to sclerotinia.
- Development of novel greenhouse methods to evaluate soybeans for resistance to sclerotinia stem rot.
- Development of three experimental soybean breeding lines that express high and stable resistance to sclerotinia.