Novel approaches for evaluating brassica germplasm for insect resistance

Sharma, Garima (2016). Novel approaches for evaluating brassica germplasm for insect resistance. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

PDF - Accepted Version

Download (3MB)


Brassica crops are grown worldwide for food, oil, medicinal and crop rotation properties. They suffer from insect pests which cause large yield and economic losses. Application of insecticides is the preferred way of dealing with insect problems, but it is not only hazardous to the environment, it also affects humans as the chemicals easily get incorporated into the food chain. As a result, new more resistant varieties are urgently needed to meet the demand of growing populations.

A set of 200 accessions were classified as resistant (non-preferred) or susceptible (preferred) in response to cabbage aphid feeding in the field. Fifteen accessions were further assessed to characterize and identify the level and location of resistance factors by investigating feeding behaviour of cabbage aphid using the Electrical Penetration Graph (EPG) technique. The feeding behaviour assessment revealed the presence of interspecific & intraspecific variation and presence of resistance factors at multiple levels.

The transcriptional response of these accessions under presence and absence of aphid feeding for 24h showed that gene expression is highly regulated in response to aphid feeding. Gene ontology (GO) enrichment study helped identify strong candidate genes for aphid resistance. In addition to this, the gene expression differences between CWR and landraces indicated adaptations of landraces during the process of domestication. Lastly, Gene expression data was used to develop models to predict insect resistance status.

In conclusion, the combination of EPG and transcriptomics provides an opportunity to assess brassica germplasm for further research into defence mechanisms of cabbage aphids.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
School or Department: School of Biosciences
Funders: European Commission
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH426 Genetics
Q Science > QK Botany


Request a Correction Request a Correction
View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year