IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis

Magnaporthe oryzae

20th April, 2023 Agriculture

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  • Scientists have warned that the fungus Magnaporthe oryzae, which is destroying South American wheat crops, could spread worldwide.

Fast Facts

  • Researchers first detected the pathogen in Brazilian wheat crops in the 1980s.
  • The fungus has since spread throughout South America.
  • Cases of infection have also been reported in Asia in 2016 and Africa in 2018.
  • Magnaporthe oryzae infects wild and cultivated grasses, most notably rice and wheat.
  • The pathogen affects the crop in a disease known as ‘wheat blast’.
  • The seriousness of the disease is indicated by the fact that crops are burnt to avoid this disease.
  • Wheat crops around the world are susceptible to the fungus, the researchers warned in the study.
  • The pathogen is also resistant to fungicides.
  • The biggest concern is that this fungus has the potential to affect not only wheat but also other major food crops.

Need for accurate, early detection

  • Genomic surveillance allows for early and accurate detection of these, which can lead to the discovery of the origin of the disease and help create a prevention strategy.


Q. Match the following:

Name of the disease                              Affected Plant

1. Bacterial leaf blight (BLB)                 a. Potato.

2. Gummosis                                            b.Rice

3. Powdery mildew                                 c. Pulses

4. Late blight                                            d. Sugarcane

A.    1-a, 2-d, 3-c, 4-a

B.    1-b, 2-d, 3-c, 4-a

C.    1-c, 2-d, 3-a, 4-b

D.   1-c, 2-a, 3-b, 4-d

Answer: B