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Posted Tue Sep 4 2012: from IRIN:
FOOD: Another strain of deadly wheat fungus in South Africa
As the world's supply of staple grains grows tight, scientists are learning about the discovery in South Africa of yet another deadly variant of Ug99 stem rust, a virulent fungal disease that can devastate wheat crops within weeks.... The fungus has begun mutating rapidly over the last few years, earning it the epithet "the polio of agriculture". The new mutations, or "races", of this disease have acquired the ability to defeat two of the most important stem-rust-resistant genes, which are widely used in the world's wheat breeding programmes.
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