Molecular markers linked to the blast resistance gene Pi-z in rice for use in marker-assisted selection. Academic Article uri icon


  • Rice blast, caused by the fungal pathogen Pyricularia grisea, is a serious disease affecting rice-growing regions around the world. Current methods for identification of blast-resistant germplasm and progeny typically utilize phenotypic screening. However, phenotypic screens are influenced by environmental conditions and the presence of one resistance gene can sometimes phenotypically mask other genes conferring resistance to the same blast race. Pi-z is a dominant gene located on the short arm of chromosome 6 that confers complete resistance to five races of blast. Using sequence data found in public databases and degenerate primer pairs based on the P-loop, nucleotide binding sites and kinase domain motifs of previously cloned resistance genes, we have developed PCR-based DNA markers that cosegregate with the gene. These markers are polymorphic in a wide range of germplasm, including the narrow crosses characteristic of applied rice-breeding programs. They can now be used as a low cost, high-throughput alternative to conventional phenotypic screening for direct detection of blast resistance genes, allowing rapid introgression of genes into susceptible varieties as well as the incorporation of multiple genes into individual lines for more-durable blast resistance.

published proceedings

  • Theor Appl Genet

author list (cited authors)

  • Conaway-Bormans, C. A., Marchetti, M. A., Johnson, C. W., McClung, A. M., & Park, W. D.

citation count

  • 41

complete list of authors

  • Conaway-Bormans, CA||Marchetti, MA||Johnson, CW||McClung, AM||Park, WD

publication date

  • September 2003