Linum marginale is a host to the specific rust fungus Melampsora lini, which is an autoecious rust that is capable of reproducing sexually and asexually on Linum marginale.  Many results show that pathogen populations have exclusive virulence patterns while host populations have various phenotypes.  Therefore there is evidence of virulence-gene adaptation of Melampsora lini within Linum marginale (Lawrence G.J. Burdon, 1989).  Considering the population of Linum marginale, and the race of Melampsora lini, there are many different possible types of future outcomes.  The pathogen or the host and pathogen could become locally extinct, the host population may obtain resistance by possible immigration or mutation, or the expansion of the pathogen population may be affected if the number of Linum marginale plants is greatly reduced (Burdon, J.J. amd A.M. Jarosz, 1991).




Not only does it have interactions with the fungus, Melampsora lini, but also with humans! Who knew such a small seed had so many health benefits for us! Many studies have shown that the Linum marginale seed has a protective layer that helps fight against 3 types of cancers: breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colon cancer and many other health concerns such has heart disease and cholesterol (Magee 2011). One tablespoon of whole flaxseeds has many nutritional benefits (USDA):
55 Calories
1.88 grams of protein
2.97 grams of carbohydrates
4.34 grams of fat
2.8 grams of fiber
3 milligrams of sodium

Flaxseeds are also very high in Omega-3, lignans, and both soluble fibers and insoluble fibers. Omega-3s are considered one of the good fats that are said to help with heart health.


Lignans contain phytoestrogens which act like the hormone estrogen, this helps the body being protected from cancer (Ehrlich 2011). According to, 'exposure to lignans during adolescence helps reduce the risk of breast cancer' (Magee 2011). It helps by blocking enzymes that involve hormones that help with the growth of turmor cells.  

Soluble fibers attract water and help slow down digestion while lowering cholestrol. Insoluble fibers help food pass and help food move through the stomach and intestines more quickly (Dugdale et al. 2012). However because it is high in fiber it can be considered a natural laxative. Watch how much you eat because it could turn out not so pretty!

If you ever get a chance, try flaxseeds! There are many other foods that have many benefits for humans. Check out the websites on: Salvia officinalis (sage), Macadamia tetraphylla (macadamia nuts), and you can not forget the delicious Vaccinium corymbosum (blueberry)!


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