What is Xoo infection?

Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae is commonly known as Xoo infection. It is an bacterial leaf blight disease in rice. It causes huge yield losses to rice cultivation in both temperate and tropical regions especially in Asia.

Symptoms

Some of the symptoms that appear on the leaves of young plants include:

  • pale-green to grey-green color of leaves,
  • water-soaked streaks around the leaf tip and margins.
  • yellowish-white with wavy edges on the leaves.
  • The whole leaf eventually become whitish or greyish and then dye.
  • In older plants, the leaves turns yellow and then die.

What is Xoo?

Xoo is a bacterium that causes a serious bacterial leaf blight disease in rice plant.

Recent developments

  • A recipient of the DST-Inspire Faculty Fellowship has discovered the mechanism by which Xoo interacts with rice plant and causes disease.
  • The team is currently developing new disease control strategies which can be used as vaccines. The vaccine will activate the rice immune system and provide resistance from subsequent infections by pathogens to the rice plants.
  • The group has zeroed in on some molecules that they derived from the Xoo bacterium and from infected rice cell walls. They hope that these molecules would help them to develop vaccines.
  • The group is working on a cellulase protein secreted by Xoo.

Cellulase Protein

It is an enzyme that converts the cellulose into glucose or a disaccharide. The cellulase protein that the group has obtained is secreted by Xoo. It has the features of a typical vaccine since it is a potent elicitor of rice immune responses. If the rice plants are pre-treated with this protein, It provides resistance to rice against subsequent Xoo infection.

Conclusion

Rice is the most widely grown crop in the worldwide and it plays an important role in food security. So, developing mechanisms of plant-pathogen interaction of rice and Xoo will  be helping to develop rice plants that are more resistant to disease which is caused by Xoo.