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Plant Biotechnol J. 2007 Nov;5(6):759-67.

Maize streak virus-resistant transgenic maize: a first for Africa.

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  • 1Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Cape Town, Private Bag, Rondebosch 7701, South Africa.


In this article, we report transgene-derived resistance in maize to the severe pathogen maize streak virus (MSV). The mutated MSV replication-associated protein gene that was used to transform maize showed stable expression to the fourth generation. Transgenic T2 and T3 plants displayed a significant delay in symptom development, a decrease in symptom severity and higher survival rates than non-transgenic plants after MSV challenge, as did a transgenic hybrid made by crossing T2 Hi-II with the widely grown, commercial, highly MSV-susceptible, white maize genotype WM3. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first maize to be developed with transgenic MSV resistance and the first all-African-produced genetically modified crop plant.

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