A membrane associated tandem kinase from wild emmer wheat confers broad-spectrum resistance to powdery mildew

Miaomiao Li, Huaizhi Zhang, Huixin Xiao, Keyu Zhu, Wenqi Shi, Dong Zhang, Yong Wang, Lijun Yang, Qiuhong Wu, Jingzhong Xie, Yongxing Chen, Dan Qiu, Guanghao Guo, Ping Lu, Beibei Li, Lei Dong, Wenling Li, Xuejia Cui, Lingchuan Li, Xiubin TianChengguo Yuan, Yiwen Li, Dazhao Yu, Eviatar Nevo, Tzion Fahima, Hongjie Li, Lingli Dong, Yusheng Zhao, Zhiyong Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Crop wild relatives offer natural variations of disease resistance for crop improvement. Here, we report the isolation of broad-spectrum powdery mildew resistance gene Pm36, originated from wild emmer wheat, that encodes a tandem kinase with a transmembrane domain (WTK7-TM) through the combination of map-based cloning, PacBio SMRT long-read genome sequencing, mutagenesis, and transformation. Mutagenesis assay reveals that the two kinase domains and the transmembrane domain of WTK7-TM are critical for the powdery mildew resistance function. Consistently, in vitro phosphorylation assay shows that two kinase domains are indispensable for the kinase activity of WTK7-TM. Haplotype analysis uncovers that Pm36 is an orphan gene only present in a few wild emmer wheat, indicating its single ancient origin and potential contribution to the current wheat gene pool. Overall, our findings not only provide a powdery mildew resistance gene with great potential in wheat breeding but also sheds light into the mechanism underlying broad-spectrum resistance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3124
JournalNature Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - 10 Apr 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2024.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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