The rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae infects plants with a specialized cell called an appressorium, which uses turgor to drive a rigid penetration peg through the rice leaf cuticle. Here, we show that NADPH oxidases (Nox) are necessary for septin-mediated reorientation of the F-actin cytoskeleton to facilitate cuticle rupture and plant cell invasion. We report that the Nox2–NoxR complex spatially organizes a heteroligomeric septin ring at the appressorium pore, required for assembly of a toroidal F-actin network at the point of penetration peg emergence. Maintenance of the cortical F-actin network during plant infection independently requires Nox1, a second NADPH oxidase, which is necessary for penetration hypha elongation. Organization of F-actin in appressoria is disrupted by application of antioxidants, whereas latrunculin-mediated depolymerization of appressorial F-actin is competitively inhibited by reactive oxygen species, providing evidence that regulated synthesis of reactive oxygen species by fungal NADPH oxidases directly controls septin and F-actin dynamics.
Lauren S. Ryder, Yasin F. Dagdas, Thomas A. Mentlak, Michael J. Kershaw, Christopher R. Thornton, Martin Schuster, Jisheng Chen, Zonghua Wang, and Nicholas J. Talbot
Via Elsa Ballini, Kamoun Lab @ TSL