Controversial ‘gene drive’ could disarm deadly wheat pathogen

Elizabeth Pennisi,  Science,  2020.

The Fusarium fungus is the bane of every wheat farmer’s existence. Causing wheat scab—also known as head blight—it decimates harvests and contaminates grains with a toxin harmful to people and animals. Now, Australian researchers have come up with a new strategy to combat Fusarium graminearum, the most notorious wheat scab pathogen. In the lab, they have used a genome-altering technology called “gene drive” to get rid of the fungal genes that make this pest so toxic.