Study reveals secret to WOBM resistance

Scientists have gained a better understanding of how and why some wheat varieties are resistant to Wheat Orange Blossom Midge, following ADAS research.

The study found that when certain varieties are attacked, they release acids (phenylpropenoids) that kill the larvae and form a wound plug to repair damage caused to the grain, says ADAS entomologist Jon Oakley.

Varieties such as Gatsby – due to be considered for HGCA recommendation in December – Brompton and Glasgow exhibit similar resistance mechanisms, he says.

Robigus produces the same type of chemicals that kill WOBM larvae, but does not form a wound plug, due to its different genetic background, he notes.