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Stripe rust resistance gene Yr34 (synonym Yr48) is located within a distal translocation of Triticum monococcum chromosome 5AmL into common wheat.


Key message The stripe rust resistance gene Yr34 was transferred to polyploid wheat chromosome 5AL from T. monococcum and has been used for over two centuries.Wheat stripe (or yellow) rust, caused by Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (Pst), is currently among the most damaging fungal diseases of wheat worldwide. In this study, we report that the stripe rust resistance gene Yr34 (synonym Yr48) is located within a distal segment of the cultivated Triticum monococcum subsp. monococcum chromosome 5AmL translocated to chromosome 5AL in polyploid wheat. The diploid wheat species Triticum monococcum (genome AmAm) is closely related to T. urartu (donor of the A genome to polyploid wheat) and has good levels of resistance against the stripe rust pathogen. When present in hexaploid wheat, the T. monococcum Yr34 resistance gene confers a moderate level of resistance against virulent Pst races present in California and the virulent Chinese race CYR34. In a survey of 1,442 common wheat genotypes, we identified 5AmL translocations of fourteen different lengths in 17.5% of the accessions, with higher frequencies in Europe than in other continents. The old European wheat variety "Mediterranean" was identified as a putative source of this translocation, suggesting that Yr34 has been used for over 200 years. Finally, we designed diagnostic CAPS and sequenced-based markers that will be useful to accelerate the deployment of Yr34 in wheat breeding programs to improve resistance to this devastating pathogen.

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