Fungal pathogen disables plant defense mechanism

Cabbage plants defend themselves against herbivores and pathogens by deploying a defensive mechanism called the mustard oil bomb. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology and the University of Pretoria have now been able to show that this defense is also effective against the widespread fungus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. However, the pathogen uses at least two different detoxification mechanisms that enable the fungus to successfully spread on plants defended in this way.