Scientists VIR them. N.I. Vavilov, together with colleagues from the Institute of Vegetable and Ornamental Crops named after V.I. Leibniz (Germany) are studying biochemical mechanisms that help cabbage plants to protect themselves from insect pests.
Cabbage plants produce glucosinolates to interact with the environment. These substances give the cabbage a bitter taste and smell that repels insects.
Scientists are looking for sources of genetic resistance to pests among varietal populations. In the future, they can be used to create new varieties of cabbage. Glucosinolates can be hazardous to humans, so the selection is based on this fact (so that the final product is safe for the consumer).
Field research took place at the research and production bases of VIR.
To date, scientists have evaluated 100 samples of cabbage for resistance to insects - cabbage moth and cabbage scoop on a natural background and after artificial infection.
We identified 30 - contrasting in stability and analyzed the dynamics and concentration of organic compounds.
On the basis of the Institute of Vegetable and Ornamental Crops named after Leibniz, the composition of glucosinolates and their degradation products will be determined in the selected 30 samples. Then scientists will identify proteins that are synthesized through interactions between insect and plant.
In the future, based on information about proteins, it will be possible to understand which DNA sequence encodes them. This will help create markers to find useful genes and create varieties or hybrids that are resistant to insect damage.