Plant Biology and Pathology
My lab has two major research interests:
1. asparagus improvement and
2. roles of certain monounsaturated fatty acids in plant disease resistance.
We use conventional breeding and laboratory tools in asparagus improvement. The primary objective of the program is to develop all-male hybrids that are high yielding, resistant to major asparagus diseases, and have good spear quality.
Asparagus is dioecious, with male and female flowers borne on different plants. Many studies have shown that male plants out yield the females. The males also live longer than the females, an important attribute in a perennial crop. The advantages of the males are due to the fact that they do not produce fruits, which will compete with the crowns for nutrients. Since asparagus plants depend on the nutrients stored in the crowns for next year harvest, reduction in stored nutrients will affect the yield and eventually the longevity of the plants. Another advantage of male asparagus is that without fruits they do not produce seedlin
Asparagus is susceptible to a number of diseases. Among the most devastating are crown and root rot caused by Fusarium oxysporum and F. proliferatum (Syn = F. moniliforme) rust caused by Puccinia asparagi D.C., purple spot caused by Stemphylium vesicarium, and asparagus virus I and II. All of these diseases severely reduce yield and shorten the life span of the plants.
We have recently released two elite all-male hybrids, Jersey Supreme and Jersey Deluxe. These two new hybrids produce very high yield (~ 5000LB/acre) and are very rust resistant and highly tolerant to Fusarium crown and root rot. These 2 new hybrids consistently outperform the current industry standards in trials at multiple sites.
The seeds of the elite hybrids from our research program are available at:
Jersey Asparagus Farm, http://www.jerseyasparagus.com/
Pioneer EcoScience, Tokyo, Japan Phone 03-3438-4731
|Female asparagus plant produces a lot of fruits which weaken the plant over time.|
A new generation of all-male hybrids with additional desirable attributes, excellent spear morphology and high adpatibility to warm growing regions have been developed. These new hybrids have been in trial at many parts of the world. Information on some of these trials is available on the Internation Asparagus Cultivar Trial website.
NJ978 is an all-male hybrid.
Yield: NJ978 out yields Jersey Giant, a benchmark of Rutgers Asparagus Program, on average by 10%.
Disease resistance: Highly resistant to rust and tolerant to Fusarium crown and root rot.
General quality: Very good
Size: Approximately 35% jumbo, 65% medium.
Form: Cylindrical and highly uniform.
Tip: tapering and tight.
Node scale: tight.
Stem: light green
Node bracts: pale green with purple tint
Monounsaturated fatty acid and disease resistance
We have found that plants with elevated palmitoleic acid (16:1) display enhanced resistance to a number of fungal diseases including tomato powdery mildew caused by Erysiphe polygoni, , tomato Phytophthora blight caused by Phytophthora, and eggplant Verticillium wilt caused by Verticillium dahliae. We are investigating the cause of the enhanced resistance.
Left: Powdery mildew infection on tomato leave.
Right: Reduced infection on T5 tomato leaf wcontaining elevated palmitoleic acid
Left: Germination of Erisiphe poligoni spores on wild-type tomato cuticle.
Right: Inhibition of spore germination on cuticle of T5 tomato with elevated palmitoleic acid
Palmitoleic acid causes potassium loss
Left: Germinating powdery mildew spores.
Right: Presense if potassium in spores as indicated by PBFI staining
Left: Inhibition of spore germination by 16:1
Right: Loss of potassium in spores treated with 16:1
Xing, J.S., C. Chin. Modification of Fatty Acids in Eggplant Affects Its Resistance to Verticillium dahliae. Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology. 56: 217-225 (2000)
Wang, C., C. Chin, and T. Gianfagna. Relationship of Cutin Monomers and Tomato Resistance to Powdery Mildew Infection. Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology. 57: 55-61(2000)
Pedapudi S.,C. Chin, H. Pedersen. Production and Elicitation f Benzalacetone and the Raspberry Ketone in Cell Suspension Cultures of Rubus idaeus. Biotechnology Progress. 16: 346-349. (2000).
Chen, Y., J. Xing, C. Chin C. Ho. Effect of urea on volatile generation from Maillard reaction of cysteine and ribose. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 48: 3512-3516 (2000).
Zhu N., Rafi, M. M., DiPaola, R. S., Xing, J. S., Chin, C-K, Badmaev, V. Ghai, G., Rosen, R.T., Ho C-T. Isolation and Characterization of a Bioactive Fraction from Gum Guggul (Commiphora wightii) Phytochemistry. 56: 723-727 (2001)
Wang C, J. S. Xing, C. Chin, C. Ho, C. E. Martin. Modification of fatty acids changes the flavor volatiles in tomato leaves. Phytochemistry, 58: 227-232 (2001).
Sun, R., Sacalis, J. N. Chin, C., Still, C. Bioactive aromatic compounds from leaves and stems of Vanilla fragrans. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 49: 5161-5164 (2001).
Sang, S, A. Lao, Y. Wang, C. Chin, R. T. Rosen, C. T. Ho. Antifungal constituents from the seeds of Allium fistulosum L. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 50: 6318-6321 (2002)
Wang C., C. Chin, Xing J. S. Peters, J. Fatty acids with certain structural characteristics are potent inhibitors of germination and inducers of cell death of powdery mildew spore. Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology. 61: 151-161 (2002).
Chin C., S. A. Garrison, C. T. Ho, M. Y. Huang, Y.. Shao., M. Wang, and J. Simon Functional Elements from Asparagus for Human Health. Acta Horticultura. 589: 233-242 (2002)
Sun R., Y. Wang, C. Chin, and S. A. Garrison. Volatile Compounds in Asparagus officinalis L. Acta Horticultura. 589: 257-266 (2002)
Peters J., C. Chin. Inhibition of photosynthetic electron transport by palmitoleic acid is partially correlated to release of thylakoid membrane proteins. . Plant Physiology and Biochemistry. 41: 117-124 (2003)
Wang M, Y. Tadmor, Q. L. Wu, C. K. Chin, S. A. Garrison and J. E. Simon. Characterization and Quantification of Major Steroidal Saponins and Flavonoids in Asparagus Shoots by LC/MS and HPLC Methods. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry . 51: 6132-6136 (2003)
Hong M, B. A. Zilinskasa, D. C. Knipple, C. Chin. cis-3-Hexenal production in tobacco is stimulated by 16-carbon monounsaturated fatty acids. Phytochemistry. 65: 159-168 (2004)
Peters J., C. Chin. Evidence for cytochrome f involvement in eggplant cell Death induced by palmitoleic Acid. Cell Death and Differentiation. 12:405-407 (2005)
Peters J., C. Chin. Potassium loss is involved in tobacco cell death induced by palmitoleic acid and ceramide. Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics. 465: 180-186 (2007)
Garrison S.A. C. Chin. Functional Elements from Asparagus for Human Health. Acta Horticulturae. 776:219-226 (2008)