Dilantha Fernando

Dilantha Fernando
University of Manitoba | UMN · Department of Plant Science

PhD

About

274
Publications
61,316
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5,647
Citations
Additional affiliations
September 1986 - December 1990
Oregon State University
Position
  • PhD Graduate Student

Publications

Publications (274)
Article
Full-text available
From a reverse genetic screen using CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing tool, we unintentionally identified an autoimmune mutant. Map-based cloning and whole-genome sequencing revealed that it contains a deletion in SMALL UBIQUITIN-RELATED MODIFIER (SUMO) protease encoding gene EARLY IN SHORT DAYS 4 (ESD4). Previous studies reported that esd4 mutants accumula...
Article
Blackleg, which is caused by the ascomycete fungus Leptosphaeria maculans, is a major disease of canola in Canada and worldwide. In Canada, canola is usually grown in rotation once every three to four years to limit yield losses. Recently, growers in Canada have begun to grow canola more intensively due to growing market demand driven by crop profi...
Article
Blackleg, caused by the fungus Leptosphaeria maculans, is an important disease of canola. Both ascospores and pycnidiospores of the fungus can infect intact leaves under conditions of extended leaf wetness, with infection then progressing further into the stem. In western Canada, spring is typically cool and dry and additional factors may be involv...
Article
Full-text available
Brassica napus (oilseed rape, canola) seedling resistance to Leptosphaeria maculans, the causal agent of blackleg (stem canker) disease, follows a gene-for- gene relationship. The avirulence genes AvrLmS and AvrLep2 were described to be perceived by the re-sistance genes RlmS and LepR2, respectively, present in B. napus ‘Surpass 400’. Here we repor...
Article
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Fusarium head blight (FHB) incited by Fusarium graminearum Schwabe is a devastating disease of barley and other cereal crops worldwide. Fusarium head blight is associated with trichothecene mycotoxins such as deoxynivalenol (DON), which contaminates grains, making them unfit for malting or animal feed industries. While genetically resistant cultiva...
Article
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Genetic diversity is vital for the survival of any population. If humans were all the same, a single strain of a nasty flu virus, like COVID-19, could wipe us all out! In plants, genetic diversity plays a similar role. The variation in the type and number of resistance gene(s) between individuals can cause the difference between surviving a disease...
Article
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Fusarium head blight (FHB) can lead to dramatic yield losses and mycotoxin contamination in small grain cereals in Canada. To assess the extent and severity of FHB in oat, samples collected from 168 commercial oat fields in the province of Manitoba, Canada, during 2016–2018 were analyzed for the occurrence of Fusarium head blight and associated myc...
Article
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Fusarium head blight caused by Fusarium graminearum is a devastating disease of malting barley. Mycotoxins associated with contaminated grain can be transferred from malt to beer and pose a health risk to consumers. In western Canada, F. graminearum has undergone an adaptive shift from 15ADON constituency to dominance by virulent 3ADON-producers; l...
Article
Plants, unlike animals, lack specialized mobile immune cells, so they do not have an adaptive immune system. Instead, plants can launch specific, self-tolerant immune responses and establish immune memory. Plants possess defence mechanisms that efficiently detect and ward off potentially dangerous microorganisms. These defence mechanisms start with...
Article
Full-text available
Blackleg, caused by the fungal pathogen Leptosphaeria maculans, is a serious threat to canola (Brassica napus L.) production in western Canada. Crop scouting and extended crop rotation, along with the use of effective genetic resistance, have been key management practices available to mitigate the impact of the disease. In recent years, new pathoge...
Article
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An oxidative burst is an early response of plants to various biotic/abiotic stresses. In plant-microbe interactions, the plant body can induce oxidative burst to activate various defense mechanisms to combat phytopathogens. A localized oxidative burst is also one of the typical behaviors during hypersensitive response (HR) caused by gene-for-gene i...
Article
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Hormone signaling plays a pivotal role in plant–microbe interactions. There are three major phytohormones in plant defense: salicylic acid (SA), jasmonic acid (JA), and ethylene (ET). The activation and trade-off of signaling between these three hormones likely determines the strength of plant defense in response to pathogens. Here, we describe the...
Preprint
White mold in Brassica napus (canola) is caused by the fungal pathogen Sclerotinia sclerotiorum and is responsible for significant losses in crop yield across the globe. With advances in high-throughput transcriptomics, our understanding of the B. napus defense response to S. sclerotiorum is becoming clearer; however, the response of individual tis...
Article
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Fusarium head blight (FHB) is a major disease in wheat causing severe economic losses globally by reducing yield and contaminating grain with mycotoxins. In Canada, Fusarium graminearum is the principal etiological agent of FHB in wheat, producing mainly the trichothecene mycotoxin, deoxynivalenol (DON) and its acetyl derivatives (15-acetyl deoxyni...
Article
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The microbial composition of the rhizosphere soil could be an important determinant of crop yield, pathogen resistance, and other beneficial attributes in plants. However, little is known about the impact of cropping sequences on microbial community dynamics, especially in economically important species like soybean. Using 2-year crop sequences of...
Article
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Fusarium head blight (FHB) is a major fungal disease that contributes to severe economic losses for wheat and barley production in Canada and other parts of the world. Rapid developments in molecular biology over the past three decades have improved the ability to devise predictive management tools to combat the effects of the disease. Important as...
Article
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A fundamental process culminating in the mechanisms of plant-pathogen interactions is the regulation of trophic divergence into biotrophic, hemibiotrophic, and necrotrophic interactions. Plant hormones, of almost all types, play significant roles in this regulatory apparatus. In plant-pathogen interactions, two classical mechanisms underlying hormo...
Article
Blackleg, caused by Leptosphaeria maculans, is a major disease of canola in Canada, Australia, and Europe. For effective deployment of resistant varieties and disease management, it is crucial to understand the population structure of L. maculans. In this study, we analyze L. maculans isolates from commercial fields in western Canada from 2014 to 2...
Article
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Canola (Brassica napus) is the major oilseed crop in Canada. Blackleg (Leptosphaeria maculans) causes yield losses annually, with a larger impact in the last two decades caused by breakdown of resistance in growers’ fields. A 4‐year small‐plot field study from 2014 to 2017 in Manitoba investigated the impact of the B. napus–L. maculans interaction...
Preprint
Full-text available
Leptosphaeria maculans , the causal agent of blackleg disease, interacts with Brassica napus (oilseed rape, canola) in a gene-for-gene manner. The avirulence genes AvrLmS and AvrLep2 were described to be perceived by the resistance genes RlmS and LepR2 , respectively, present in the cultivar Surpass 400. Here we report cloning of AvrLmS and AvrLep2...
Article
Full-text available
Blackleg, which is caused by the fungus Leptosphaeria maculans (L. maculans), is a major disease of canola in western Canada and worldwide. Long-term use of one source of resistance could cause the breakdown of its effectiveness. Therefore, appropriate use of R genes is very important, and knowledge about the distribution of avirulence genes is a p...
Article
Proteins containing valine-glutamine (VQ) motifs play important roles in plant growth and development as well as in defense responses to both abiotic and biotic stresses. Blackleg disease, which is caused by Leptosphaeria maculans, is the most important disease in canola (Brassica napus) worldwide; however, the identification of Brassica napus VQs...
Article
Full-text available
Blackleg, caused by the fungal pathogen Leptosphaeria maculans, is the most important disease affecting canola (Brassica napus) crops worldwide. We employed the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated (Cas) system to generate the mutant isolate umavr7 from a point mutation of the AvrLm7 coding region in a...
Article
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The endophytic microbiome plays an important role in plant health and pathogenesis. However, little is known about its relationship with bacterial blight (BB) of rice caused by Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo). The current study compared the community compositional structure of the endophytic microbiota in healthy and BB symptomatic leaves of ri...
Article
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Verticillium stripe in canola (Brassica napus L.) caused by Verticillium longisporum was first reported in Manitoba in 2014. In this study, Brassica crops including canola, mustard (Brassica juncea) and radish (Raphanus sativus) with visible symptoms of Verticillium stripe were collected from Portage La Prairie, Manitoba, and the pathogens were iso...
Article
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Pseudomonas chlororaphis strain PA23 is a biocontrol agent capable of protecting canola from stem rot disease caused by the fungal pathogen Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. PA23 produces several inhibitory compounds that are under control of a complex regulatory network. Included in this cascade is the PhzRI quorum sensing (QS) system, which plays an esse...
Chapter
By 2050, the global population is predicted to expand to 9.8 billion people, requiring 70% more food than we are consuming today. At the same time, crop losses are increasing due to resistance to pesticides and restrictions on the use of these products because they are harmful to humans and the environment. The need for alternative and sustainable...
Article
Leptosphaeria maculans is the causal agent of blackleg disease on Brassica napus. Determining the underlying functions of genes required for pathogenesis is essential for understanding the infection process. A chitin-binding protein (LmCBP1) was discovered as a pathogenicity factor for the infection of B. napus by L. maculans through gene knockout...
Preprint
Full-text available
Pseudomonas chlororaphis strain PA23 is a biocontrol agent capable of protecting canola from stem rot disease caused by the fungal pathogen Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. PA23 produces several of inhibitory compounds that are under control of a complex regulatory network. Included in this cascade is the PhzRI quorum sensing (QS) system, which plays an e...
Article
Full-text available
Global warming by increased atmospheric CO2 concentration has been widely accepted. Yet, there has not been any consistent conclusion on the doubled CO2 concentration that in the future will affect plant disease incidence and severity. Blackleg disease, mainly caused by Leptosphaeria maculans, is a major disease on canola production globally. Brass...
Article
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The fungal pathogen Leptosphaeria maculans causes blackleg disease on canola and rapeseed (Brassica napus) in many parts of the world. A B. napus cultivar, ‘Quinta’, has been widely used for the classification of L. maculans into pathogenicity groups. In this study, we confirmed the presence of Rlm1 in a DH line (DH24288) derived from B. napus cult...
Article
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Leptosphaeria maculans L. causing blackleg is a highly evolved fungal pathogen that damages the rapeseed industry in Canada, Australia, and Europe. Advanced backcross populations segregating for intermediate resistance (BLMR2) and susceptible (blmr2) alleles were planted and inoculated using cotyledons. Near iso-genic lines (NILs) containing the in...
Article
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Barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) is a multipurpose crop that can be harvested as grain or cut prior to maturity for use as forage. Fusarium head blight (FHB) is a devastating disease of barley that reduces quality of grain. FHB can also result in the accumulation of mycotoxins such as deoxynivalenol (DON). Breeding FHB resistant varieties has been a lon...
Article
Full-text available
Fusarium head blight (FHB), caused principally by the species belonging to the Fusarium graminearum species complex (FGSC), is an important disease in wheat, barley, and other small grain crops worldwide. Grain infected with species in the FGSC may be contaminated with trichothecene mycotoxins such as deoxynivalenol (DON) and nivalenol (NIV). In th...
Article
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Blackleg (Phoma stem canker) of crucifers is a globally important disease caused by the ascomycete species complex comprising of Leptosphaeria maculans and Leptosphaeria biglobosa. Six blackleg isolates recovered from Brassica rapa cv. Mizspoona in the Willamette Valley of Oregon were characterized as L. biglobosa based on standard pathogenicity te...
Article
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Callose plays a critical role in different biological processes including development as well as in the response to multiple biotic and abiotic stresses. In this study, we characterized the callose deposition in cotyledons of different Brassica napus varieties post-inoculated with different Leptosphaeria maculans isolates. Further, members of the c...
Article
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A correction to this article has been published and is linked from the HTML and PDF versions of this paper. The error has been fixed in the paper.
Article
Full-text available
Blackleg is a devastating disease in canola worldwide, except in China, caused by the fungal pathogen Leptosphaeria maculans. The B-genome Brassica species were reported to have a strong resistance to the blackleg pathogen L. maculans. Backcross (BC) generations, BC1F1 to BC4F1, were derived from a cross B. napus × B. juncea. Phenotype of L. macula...
Article
Full-text available
Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, the causal agent of white stem rot, is responsible for significant losses in crop yields around the globe. While our understanding of S. sclerotiorum infection is becoming clearer, genetic control of the pathogen has been elusive and effective control of pathogen colonization using traditional broad-spectrum agro-chemical...
Article
Full-text available
Leptosphaeria maculans causes blackleg disease on Brassica napus, an economically important oilseed crop. Brassica juncea has high resistance to blackleg and is a source for the development of resistant B. napus varieties. To transfer the Rlm6 resistance gene from B. juncea into B. napus, an interspecific cross between B. napus “Topas DH16516” and...
Article
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Leptosphaeria maculans is the causal agent of blackleg disease in canola (Brassica napus), resulting in significant yield loss in canola fields worldwide. AvrLm4-7 is an avirulence effector gene in L. maculans, and a single nucleotide mutation at codon 358 is responsible for the absence of the AvrLm4 allele. A tetra-primer amplification refractory...
Article
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Blackleg disease of Brassica napus caused by Leptosphaeria maculans (Lm) is largely controlled by deploying race-specific resistance (R) genes. However, selection pressure exerted by R genes causes Lm to adapt and give rise to new virulent strains through mutation and deletion of effector genes. Therefore, knowledge of effector gene function is nec...
Article
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The limitation of 16S rRNA gene sequencing (DNA-based) for microbial community analyses in water is the inability to differentiate live (dormant cells as well as growing or non-growing metabolically active cells) and dead cells, which can lead to false positive results in the absence of live microbes. Propidium-monoazide (PMA) has been used to sele...
Article
Full-text available
Blackleg, caused by the fungal pathogen Leptosphaeria maculans, is one of the most economically important diseases of canola (Brassica napus, oilseed rape) worldwide. This study assessed incidence of blackleg, the avirulence allele, and mating type distributions of L. maculans isolates collected in commercial canola fields in Manitoba, Canada, from...
Article
Full-text available
Sclerotinia stem rot (SR) is one of the most devastating diseases of canola/rapeseed. Quantitative trait loci (QTL) analyses were carried out to identify loci responsible for resistance to SR in three doubled haploid DH populations (H1, H2 and H3). Petiole inoculation technique PIT was used to evaluate the all populations for resistance to SR. Gene...
Article
Full-text available
Brassica napus is one of the world's most valuable oilseeds and is under constant pressure by the necrotrophic fungal pathogen, Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, the causal agent of white stem rot. Despite our growing understanding of host pathogen interactions at the molecular level, we have yet to fully understand the biological processes and underlying...
Article
Full-text available
Leptosphaeria maculans is the most important fungal pathogen of canola (Brassica napus, oilseed rape) that causes the devastating stem canker in canola fields of western Canada. The population genetic structure of L. maculans, represented by nine subpopulations from a 6‐year period and three different provinces in western Canada, was determined usi...
Article
Full-text available
Background The biological control agent Pseudomonas chlororaphis PA23 is capable of protecting Brassica napus (canola) from the necrotrophic fungus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum via direct antagonism. While we have elucidated bacterial genes and gene products responsible biocontrol, little is known about how the host plant responds to bacterial priming...