Stem rust resistance in wheat is suppressed by a subunit of the mediator complex.
Stem rust is an important disease of wheat that can be controlled using resistance genes. The gene SuSr-D1 identified in cultivar 'Canthatch' suppresses stem rust resistance. SuSr-D1 mutants are resistant to several races of stem rust that are virulent on wild-type plants. Here we identify SuSr-D1 by sequencing flow-sorted chromosomes, mutagenesis, and map-based cloning. The gene encodes Med15, a subunit of the Mediator Complex, a conserved protein complex in eukaryotes that regulates expression of protein-coding genes. Nonsense mutations in Med15b.D result in expression of stem rust resistance. Time-course RNAseq analysis show a significant reduction or complete loss of differential gene expression at 24?h post inoculation in med15b.D mutants, suggesting that transcriptional reprogramming at this time point is not required for immunity to stem rust. Suppression is a common phenomenon and this study provides novel insight into suppression of rust resistance in wheat.