University of Hertfordshire

Polymyxa graminis and the cereal viruses it transmits: a research challenge

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review

  • K. Kanyuka
  • Elaine Ward
  • M. J. Adams
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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
Pages (from-to)393-406
JournalMolecular Plant Pathology
Journal publication dateSep 2003
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2003


Polymyxa graminis is a eukaryotic obligate biotrophic parasite of plant roots that belongs to a poorly studied discrete taxonomic unit informally called the 'plasmodiophorids'. P. graminis is nonpathogenic, but has the ability to acquire and transmit a range of plant viruses which cause serious diseases in cereal crop species and result in significant yield reductions. The viruses are protected from the environment within A graminis resting spores ('cysts') that may remain dormant but viable for decades (probably until a suitable host plant is encountered). The persistent, soilborne nature of these diseases makes the use of virus-resistant crop varieties currently the only practical and environmentally friendly means of control.

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