Phytophthora fruit rot is a major disease impacting pickling cucumber production for which there are no resistant varieties. Genomic approaches were performed on the cucumber core collection leading to identification and verification of several quantitative trait loci associated with resistance. The results from this work can be applied to future disease resistance studies and to assist marker-assisted selection in breeding programs.
Grumet’s lab most recently focused on fruit development and disease resistance in cucumber and melon crops using molecular genetic, genomic and transgenic approaches. This centered on early stages of fruit growth and factors influencing fruit size, shape, cuticle and surface properties and resistance to Phytophthora capsici.
The compact (cp) phenotype in cucumber is an important plant architecture-related trait with potential for breeding short-vining cucumber plants for high density planting and mechanized harvest.
The CucCAP Cucumber team reported on project progress and ongoing research in April 2023.
The CucCAP Cucumber breeding and genomics team published 11 journal articles and book chapters between September 2020 and April 2023.
Downy mildew (DM) is an important disease of cucumber and other cucurbits. Many quantitative trait loci (QTL) have been identified from different resistant resources but very few have been fine mapped or cloned. CucCAP researchers in USDA-ARS and the University of Wisconsin Madison reported identification and functional characterization of the candidate gene for the major-effect QTL, dm5.3, for DM resistance from the plant introduction line PI 197088. This gene, which can enhance plant disease signaling, is currently being used to breed for disease resistance in cucumber.
Downy mildew affects cucumber crops in South Carolina every year and can cause huge crop losses. Clemson University researchers say planting early can cut growers’ losses.
CucCAP Cucumber team members made virtual presentations at the 2022 Plant and Animal Genome meeting in January 2022.