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Head smut, caused by the fungal pathogen Sporisorium reilianum, poses a grave threat to maize (Zea mays) production worldwide. Here we report cytological and molecular evidence for maize resistance to head smut. During early stages of root infection, S. reilianum mycelium was capable of penetrating the root epidermis of both resistant (Ji1037) and susceptible (HZ4) inbred lines. S. reilianum hyphae were observed in the root-stem junction at 6 days after inoculation. In an attempt to monitordoi:10.1016/j.cj.2015.02.001 fatcat:ivizjqmuk5dkpg7pcdm4ih5nnq