Bacterial Leaf Streak

The world's food security is deeply intertwined with the health of crops, and barley stands as one of the vital grains that sustain us. However, a menacing force is silently jeopardizing barley's vibrant green leaves and potentially disrupting global food systems. This force, known as Bacterial Leaf Streak Disease, has been quietly spreading its tendrils through fields, evoking concern among scientists, farmers, and agronomists alike. 

The Silent Intruder

Bacterial Leaf Streak disease, caused by the bacterium Xanthomonas translucens, is a stealthy pathogen that infiltrates the leaf tissues cereal plants, disrupting their photosynthesis and nutrient distribution. First described in the 1917, this disease has gradually escalated its impact, finding new vulnerabilities as cultivars evolve and climates shift.

Unmasking the Culprit

Understanding the nature of the bacterial intruder is crucial to devising effective countermeasures. Xanthomonas translucens is a Gram-negative bacterium armed with specialized weapons: enzymes and toxins that break down cell walls and undermine the host's defense mechanisms. This surreptitious invasion leads to the development of necrotic lesions on the leaves, severely impairing their ability to capture sunlight and produce energy.

2023 Bacterial Leaf Streak Meeting

NDSU, Fargo, North Dakota

A Global Pursuit of Solutions

International collaboration is key to battling this insidious adversary. Researchers, plant breeders, and agronomists worldwide are pooling their knowledge and resources to understand the biology and epidemiology of the causal pathogen, identify disease-resistant genes within barley's diverse genetic pool, and explore management practices to attenuate the impact of this disease on barley production. 

Go to BLS Research Website 

BLS Research of Baldwin Laboratory

Key Project Objectives: