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Modifications of Sphingolipid Content Affect Tolerance to Hemibiotrophic and Necrotrophic Pathogens by Modulating Plant Defense Responses in Arabidopsis - Plant Physiology

Sphingolipids are emerging as second messengers in programmed cell death and plant defense mechanisms. However, their role in plant defense is far from being understood, especially against necrotrophic pathogens. Sphingolipidomics and plant defense responses during pathogenic infection were evaluated in the mutant of long-chain base phosphate (LCB-P) lyase, encoded by the dihydrosphingosine-1-phosphate lyase1 (AtDPL1) gene and regulating long-chain base/LCB-P homeostasis. Atdpl1 mutants exhibit tolerance to the necrotrophic fungus Botrytis cinerea but susceptibility to the hemibiotrophic bacterium Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato (Pst). Here, a direct comparison of sphingolipid profiles in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) during infection with pathogens differing in lifestyles is described. In contrast to long-chain bases (dihydrosphingosine [d18:0] and 4,8-sphingadienine [d18:2]), hydroxyceramide and LCB-P (phytosphingosine-1-phosphate [t18:0-P] and 4-hydroxy-8-sphingenine-1-phosphate [t18:1-P]) levels are higher in Atdpl1-1 than in wild-type plants in response to B. cinerea. Following Pst infection, t18:0-P accumulates more strongly in Atdpl1-1 than in wild-type plants. Moreover, d18:0 and t18:0-P appear as key players in Pst- and B. cinerea-induced cell death and reactive oxygen species accumulation. Salicylic acid levels are similar in both types of plants, independent of the pathogen. In addition, salicylic acid-dependent gene expression is similar in both types of B. cinerea-infected plants but is repressed in Atdpl1-1 after treatment with Pst. Infection with both pathogens triggers higher jasmonic acid, jasmonoyl-isoleucine accumulation, and jasmonic acid-dependent gene expression in Atdpl1-1 mutants. Our results demonstrate that sphingolipids play an important role in plant defense, especially toward necrotrophic pathogens, and highlight a novel connection between the jasmonate signaling pathway, cell death, and sphingolipids. Plants have evolved a complex array of defenses when attacked by microbial pathogens. The success of plant resistance first relies on the capacity of the plant to recognize its invader. Among early events, a transient production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), known as the oxidative burst, is characteristic of successful pathogen recognition (Torres, 2010). Perception of pathogen attack then initiates a large array of immune responses, including modification of cell walls, as well as the production of antimicrobial proteins and metabolites like pathogenesis-related (PR) proteins and phytoalexins, respectively (Schwessinger and Ronald, 2012). The plant hormones salicylic acid (SA), jasmonic acid (JA), and ethylene (ET) are key players in the signaling networks involved in plant resistance (Bari and Jones, 2009; Tsuda and Katagiri, 2010; Robert-Seilaniantz et al., 2011). Interactions between these signal molecules allow the plant to activate and/or modulate an appropriate array of defense responses, depending on the pathogen lifestyle, necrotroph or biotroph (Glazebrook, 2005; Koornneef and Pieterse, 2008). Whereas SA is considered essential for resistance to (hemi)biotrophic pathogens, it is assumed that JA and ET signaling pathways are important for resistance to necrotrophic pathogens in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana; Thomma et al., 2001; Glazebrook, 2005). A successful innate immune response often includes the so-called hypersensitive response (HR), a form of rapid programmed cell death (PCD) occurring in a limited area at the site of infection. This suicide of infected cells is thought to limit the spread of biotrophic pathogens, including viruses, bacteria, fungi, and oomycetes (Mur et al., 2008). During the past decade, significant progress has been made in our understanding of the cellular function of plant sphingolipids. Besides being structural components of cell membranes, sphingolipids are bioactive metabolites that regulate important cellular processes such as cell survival and PCD, occurring during either plant development or plant defense (Dunn et al., 2004; Berkey et al., 2012; Markham et al., 2013). The first evidence of the role of sphingolipids in these processes came from the use of the fungal toxins fumonisin B1 (FB1) and AAL, produced by the necrotrophic agent Alternaria alternata f. sp. lycopersici. These toxins are structural sphingosine (d18:1) analogs and function as ceramide synthase inhibitors. They triggered PCD when exogenously applied to plants. Mutant strains in which the production of such toxins is abrogated failed to infect the host plant, implying that toxin accumulation is required for pathogenicity and that the induction of plant PCD could be considered a virulence tool used by necrotrophic pathogens (Berkey et al., 2012). Moreover, several studies revealed that ceramides (Cers) and long-chain bases (LCBs) are also potent inducers of PCD in plants. For example, exogenously applied Cers and LCBs (d18:0, d18:1, or t18:0) induced PCD either in cell suspension cultures (Liang et al., 2003; Lachaud et al., 2010, 2011; Alden et al., 2011) or in whole seedlings (Shi et al., 2007; Takahashi et al., 2009; Saucedo-García et al., 2011). AAL- and FB1-induced PCD seemed to be due to the accumulation of free sphingoid bases (dihydrosphingosine [d18:0] and phytosphingosine [t18:0]; Abbas et al., 1994; Brandwagt et al., 2000; Shi et al., 2007). Spontaneous cell death in lag one homolog1 or L-myoinositol1-phosphate synthase mutant could be due to trihydroxy-LCB and/or Cer accumulation (Donahue et al., 2010; Ternes et al., 2011). Deciphering of Cer participation in the induction of HR and associated PCD also came from studies on accelerated cell death5 (acd5) and enhancing resistance to powdery mildew8 (RPW8)-mediated hypersensitive response (erh1) mutants, which displayed overaccumulation of Cers. These mutants exhibited spontaneous cell death and resistance to biotrophic pathogens, which seemed to be linked with SA and PR protein accumulation (Liang et al., 2003; Wang et al., 2008). Altogether, these data provide evidence of a link between PCD, defense, and sphingolipid metabolism. However, the fatty acid hydroxylase1/2 (atfah1/atfah2) double mutant that accumulates SA and Cers was more tolerant to the obligate biotrophic fungus Golovinomyces cichoracearum but did not display a PCD-like phenotype, suggesting that Cers alone are not involved in the induction of PCD (König et al., 2012). Moreover, Saucedo-García et al. (2011) postulated that dihydroxy-LCBs, but not trihydroxy-LCBs, might be primary mediators for LCB-induced PCD. The sphingoid base hydroxylase sbh1/sbh2 double mutant completely lacking trihydroxy-LCBs showed enhanced expression of PCD marker genes (Chen et al., 2008). On the contrary, increase in t18:0 was specifically sustained in plant interaction with the avirulent Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato (Pst) strain and correlated with a strong PCD induction in leaves (Peer et al., 2010). Thus, the nature of sphingolipids able to induce PCD is still under debate and may evolve depending on plants and their environment. The phosphorylated form of LCBs (LCB-Ps) could abrogate PCD induced by LCBs, Cers, or heat stress in a dose-dependent manner (Shi et al., 2007; Alden et al., 2011). Furthermore, blocking the conversion of LCBs to LCB-Ps by using specific inhibitors induced PCD in cell suspension culture (Alden et al., 2011). Recently, overexpression of rice (Oryza sativa) LCB kinase in transgenic tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) plants reduced PCD after treatment with FB1 (Zhang et al., 2013). Genetic mutation on LCB-P lyase encoded by the AtDPL1 gene, modifying the LCB-LCB-P ratio, could impact PCD levels after treatment with FB1 (Tsegaye et al., 2007). Altogether, these data point to the existence of a rheostat between LCBs and their phosphorylated forms that controls plant cell fate toward cell death or survival. Data on plant sphingolipid functions are still fragmentary. Only a few reports have described interconnections between sphingolipids, cell death, and plant defense responses, almost exclusively in response to (hemi)biotrophic pathogens. Knowledge about such relations in response to necrotrophic pathogens is still in its infancy (Rivas-San Vicente et al., 2013; Bi et al., 2014). In this report, the link between sphingolipids, cell death, and plant defense has been explored in response to Botrytis cinerea infection and in comparison with Pst infection. For this purpose, Atdpl1 mutant plants, disturbed in LCB/LCB-P accumulation without displaying any phenotype under standard growth conditions (Tsegaye et al., 2007), have been analyzed after pathogen infection. Our results revealed that modification of sphingolipid contents not only impacted plant tolerance to hemibiotrophs but also greatly affected resistance to necrotrophs. Whereas the SA signaling pathway is globally repressed in Atdpl1-1 compared with wild-type plants, the JA signaling pathway is significantly enhanced. Cell death and ROS accumulation are markedly modified in Atdpl1-1 mutant plants. We further demonstrated that phytosphingosine-1-phosphate (t18:0-P) and d18:0 are key players in pathogen-induced cell death and ROS generation. Here, we thus established a link between JA signaling, PCD, and sphingolipid metabolism.
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Transcriptional Dynamics Driving MAMP-Triggered Immunity and Pathogen Effector-Mediated Immunosuppression in Arabidopsis Leaves Following Infection with Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato DC3000 - Tha ...

Transcriptional reprogramming is integral to effective plant defense. Pathogen effectors act transcriptionally and posttranscriptionally to suppress defense responses. A major challenge to understanding disease and defense responses is discriminating between transcriptional reprogramming associated with microbial-associated molecular pattern (MAMP)-triggered immunity (MTI) and that orchestrated by effectors. A high-resolution time course of genome-wide expression changes following challenge with Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato DC3000 and the nonpathogenic mutant strain DC3000hrpA- allowed us to establish causal links between the activities of pathogen effectors and suppression of MTI and infer with high confidence a range of processes specifically targeted by effectors. Analysis of this information-rich data set with a range of computational tools provided insights into the earliest transcriptional events triggered by effector delivery, regulatory mechanisms recruited, and biological processes targeted. We show that the majority of genes contributing to disease or defense are induced within 6 h postinfection, significantly before pathogen multiplication. Suppression of chloroplast-associated genes is a rapid MAMP-triggered defense response, and suppression of genes involved in chromatin assembly and induction of ubiquitin-related genes coincide with pathogen-induced abscisic acid accumulation. Specific combinations of promoter motifs are engaged in fine-tuning the MTI response and active transcriptional suppression at specific promoter configurations by P. syringae.
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Bacterial RNAs activate innate immunity in Arabidopsis - New Phytologist

The common molecular patterns of microbes play a critical role in the regulation of plant innate immunity. However, little is known about the role of nucleic acids in this process in plants. We pre-infiltrated Arabidopsis leaves with total RNAs from Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000 (Pto DC3000) and subsequently inoculated these plants with the same bacterial cells. Total Pto DC3000 RNAs pre-infiltrated into Arabidopsis leaves elicited plant immune responses against Pto DC3000. However, sheared RNAs and RNase A application failed to induce immunity, suggesting that intact bacterial RNAs function in plant innate immunity. This notion was supported by the positive regulation of superoxide anion levels, callose deposition, two mitogen-activated protein kinases and defense-related genes observed in bacterial RNA-pre-treated leaves. Intriguingly, the Pto DC3000 population was not compromised in known pattern recognition receptor mutants for chitin, flagellin and elongation factor-Tu (EF-Tu). Plant defense-related mutant analyses further revealed that bacterial RNA-elicited innate immunity was normally required for salicylic and jasmonic acid signaling. Notably, among total RNAs, the abundant bacterial RNA species 16S and 23S ribosomal RNAs were the major determinants of this response. Our findings provide evidence that bacterial RNA serves as a microbe-associated molecular pattern in plants.

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9-Lipoxygenase-derived oxylipins activate brassinosteroid signaling to promote cell wall-based defense and limit pathogen infection

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The oxylipins, a large family of oxygenated lipid derivatives, regulate plant development and immunity. Two members of the 9-lipoxygenase (9 LOX) oxylipin pathway, 9 hydroxyoctadecatrienoic acid (9-HOT) and 9 ketooctadecatrienoic acid (9-KOT), control root development and plant defense. Studies in Arabidopsis using a series of 9 HOT- and 9-KOT-insensitive noxy mutants (non-responding to oxylipins) showed the importance of the cell wall as a 9-LOX-induced defense component and participation of NOXY proteins in signaling cell wall damage. Here we examined 9-LOX signaling using the mutants lox1lox5, which lacks 9-LOX activity, and noxy2-2, which shows oxylipin insensitivity and mitochondrial dysfunction. Mutants in brassinosteroids (BR), a class of plant hormones necessary for normal plant growth and control of cell wall integrity, were also analyzed. Several lines of evidence indicated that 9 LOX-derived oxylipins induce BR synthesis and signaling to activate cell wall-based responses such as callose deposition, and that constitutive activation of BR signaling in bes1-D plants enhances this response. We found that constitutive BR signaling in bes1-D and bzr1-1D mutants conferred resistance to Pseudomonas syringae. bes1-D and bzr1-1D showed increased resistance to Golovinomyces cichoracearum, an obligate biotrophic fungus that penetrates the cell wall for successful infection, whereas susceptibility was enhanced in lox1lox5 and noxy2-2. Our results indicate sequential action of 9-LOX and BR signaling in activating cell wall-based defense, and that this response prevents pathogen penetration and growth. These results show interaction between the 9 LOX and BR pathways and help to clarify their role in modulating plant defense.

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Plant resistance against the parasitic nematode Heterodera schachtii is mediated by MPK3 and MPK6 kinases, which are controlled by the MAPK phosphatase AP2C1 in Arabidopsis

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Plant-parasitic cyst nematodes infect plants and form highly sophisticated feeding sites in roots. It is not known which plant cell signalling mechanisms trigger plant defence during the early stages of nematode parasitism. Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) are central components of protein phosphorylation cascades transducing extracellular signals to plant defence responses. MAPK phosphatases control kinase activities and the signalling outcome. The involvement and the role of MPK3 and MPK6, as well as the MAPK phosphatase AP2C1, is demonstrated during parasitism of the beet cyst nematode Heterodera schachtii in Arabidopsis. Our data reveal notable activation patterns of plant MAPKs and the induction of AP2C1 suggesting the attenuation of defence signalling in plant cells during early nematode infection. It is demonstrated that the ap2c1 mutant that is lacking AP2C1 is more attractive but less susceptible to nematodes compared with the AP2C1-overexpressing line. This implies that the function of AP2C1 is a negative regulator of nematode-induced defence. By contrast, the enhanced susceptibility of mpk3 and mpk6 plants indicates a positive role of stress-activated MAPKs in plant immunity against nematodes. Evidence is provided that phosphatase AP2C1, as well as AP2C1-targeted MPK3 and MPK6, are important regulators of plant–nematode interaction, where the co-ordinated action of these signalling components ensures the timely activation of plant defence.

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PBL13 is a serine/threonine protein kinase that negatively regulates Arabidopsis immune responses.

Receptor-like cytoplasmic kinases (RLCKs) are a subset of plant receptor-like kinases lacking both extracellular and transmembrane domains. Some of the 46 members in the Arabidopsis RLCK subfamily VII have been linked to plant innate immunity, however most remain uncharacterized. Thus, multiple subfamily VII members are expected to be involved in plant immune signaling. Here, we investigate the role of PBL13, a subfamily VII RLCK with unique domain architecture. Unlike other characterized RLCKs, PBL13 T-DNA insertion lines exhibit enhanced disease resistance after inoculation with virulent Pseudomonas syringae. The pbl13-2 knockout also exhibits elevated basal level expression of the PR1 defense marker gene, enhanced ROS burst in response to perception of bacterial microbial patterns, and accelerated flagellin-induced activation of MAP kinases. Recombinant PBL13 is an active kinase and its primary autophosphorylated sites map to a 15 amino acid repeat motif unique to PBL13. Complementation of pbl13-2 with PBL13-3xFLAG converts the enhanced resistance and elevated ROS phenotypes back to wild type levels. In contrast, kinase dead PBL13K111A-3xFLAG was unable to rescue pbl13-2 disease phenotypes. Consistent with the enhanced ROS burst in the pbl13-2 knockout, PBL13 is able to associate with the NADPH oxidase RBOHD by split-luciferase complementation assay, and this association is disrupted by flagellin treatment. We conclude that the PBL13 kinase negatively regulates plant innate immunity to pathogenic bacteria and can associate with RBOHD prior to pathogen perception. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that PBL13 acts to prevent inappropriate activation of defense responses in the absence of pathogen challenge.

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Pseudomonas fluorescens PTA-CT2 Triggers Local and Systemic Immune Response Against Botrytis cinerea in Grapevine — Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions

Pseudomonas fluorescens PTA-CT2 Triggers Local and Systemic Immune Response Against Botrytis cinerea in Grapevine — Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it

Although induced systemic resistance (ISR) is well-documented in the context of plant–beneficial bacteria interactions, knowledge about the local and systemic molecular and biochemical defense responses before or upon pathogen infection in grapevine is very scarce. In this study, we first investigated the capacity of grapevine plants to express immune responses at both above- and below-ground levels upon interaction with a beneficial bacterium, Pseudomonas fluorescens PTA-CT2. We then explored whether the extent of priming state could contribute to the PTA-CT2-induced ISR in Botrytis cinerea–infected leaves. Our data provide evidence that this bacterium colonized grapevine roots but not the above-ground plant parts and altered the plant phenotype that displayed multiple defense responses both locally and systemically. The grapevine roots and leaves exhibited distinct patterns of defense-related gene expression during root colonization by PTA-CT2. Roots responded faster than leaves and some responses were more strongly upregulated in roots than in leaves and vice versa for other genes. These responses appear to be associated with some induction of cell death in roots and a transient expression of HSR, a hypersensitive response-related gene in both local (roots) and systemic (leaves) tissues. However, stilbenic phytoalexin patterns followed opposite trends in roots compared with leaves but no phytoalexin was exuded during plant-bacterium interaction, suggesting that roots could play an important role in the transfer of metabolites contributing to immune response at the systemic level. Unexpectedly, in B. cinerea–infected leaves PTA-CT2-mediated ISR was accompanied in large part by a downregulation of different defense-related genes, including HSR. Only phytoalexins and glutathion-S-transferase 1 transcripts were upregulated, while the expression of anthocyanin biosynthetic genes was maintained at a higher level than the control. This suggests that decreased expression of HSR, as a marker of cell death, and activation of secondary metabolism pathways could be responsible for a reduced B. cinerea colonization capacity in bacterized plants.

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Expression patterns of FLAGELLIN SENSING 2 map to bacterial entry sites in plant shoots and roots

Abstract

Pathogens can colonize all plant organs and tissues. To prevent this, each cell must be capable of autonomously triggering defence. Therefore, it is generally assumed that primary sensors of the immune system are constitutively present. One major primary sensor against bacterial infection is the FLAGELLIN SENSING 2 (FLS2) pattern recognition receptor (PRR). To gain insights into its expression pattern, the FLS2 promoter activity in β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter lines was monitored. The data show that pFLS2::GUS activity is highest in cells and tissues vulnerable to bacterial entry and colonization, such as stomata, hydathodes, and lateral roots. GUS activity is also high in the vasculature and, by monitoring Ca2+responses in the vasculature, it was found that this tissue contributes to flg22-induced Ca2+ burst. The FLS2 promoter is also regulated in a tissue- and cell type-specific manner and is responsive to hormones, damage, and biotic stresses. This results in stimulus-dependent expansion of the FLS2 expression domain. In summary, a tissue- and cell type-specific map of FLS2 expression has been created correlating with prominent entry sites and target tissues of plant bacterial pathogens.

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Differentially-expressed genes in rice infected by Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae relative to a flagellin-deficient mutant reveal potential functions of flagellin in host–pathogen interactions - Spr...

Differentially-expressed genes in rice infected by Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae relative to a flagellin-deficient mutant reveal potential functions of flagellin in host–pathogen interactions - Spr... | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it
AbstractBackground

Plants have evolved a sensitive defense response system that detects and recognizes various pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) (e.g. flagellin) and induces immune responses to protect against invasion. Transcriptional responses in rice to PAMPs produced by Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo), the bacterial blight pathogen, have not yet been defined.

Results

We characterized transcriptomic responses in rice inoculated with the wildtype (WT) Xoo and flagellin-deficient mutant ∆fliC through RNA-seq analysis. Digital gene expression (DGE) analysis based on Solexa/Illumina sequencing was used to investigate transcriptomic responses in 30 day-old seedlings of rice (Oryza sativa L. cv. Nipponbare). 1,680 genes were differentially-expressed (DEGs) in rice inoculated with WT relative to ∆fliC; among which 1,159 genes were up-regulated and 521 were down-regulated. Expression patterns of 12 randomly-selected DEGs assayed by quantitative real time PCR (qRT-PCR) were similar to those detected by DGE analyses, confirming reliability of the DGE data. Functional annotations revealed the up-regulated DEGs are involved in the cell wall, lipid and secondary metabolism, defense response and hormone signaling, whereas the down-regulated ones are associated with photosynthesis. Moreover, 57 and 21 specifically expressed genes were found after WT and ∆fliC treatments, respectively.

Conclusions

DEGs were identified in rice inoculated with WT Xoo relative to ∆fliC. These genes were predicted to function in multiple biological processes, including the defense response and photosynthesis in rice. This study provided additional insights into molecular basis of rice response to bacterial infection and revealed potential functions of bacterial flagellin in the rice-Xoo interactions.

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Identification of fungus-responsive cis-acting element in the promoter of Brassica juncea chitinase gene, BjCHI1

Abstract

Chitinases are a group of pathogenesis-related proteins. The Brassica juncea chitinase gene BjCHI1 is highly inducible by pathogenic fungal infection, suggesting that the promoter of BjCHI1 might contain specific cis-acting element responsive to fungal attack. To identify the fungus-responsive element inBjCHI1 promoter (BjC-P), a series of binary plant transformation vectors were constructed by fusing the BjC-P or its deletion-derivatives to β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene. Expression of the GUS reporter gene was systematically assayed by a transient gene expression system in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves treated with fungal elicitor Hexa-N-Acetyl-Chitohexaose, as well as in transgenic Arabidopsis plants inoculated with fungus Botrytis cinerea. The histochemical and quantitative GUS assays showed that the W-box-like element (GTAGTGACTCAT) in the region (−668 to −657) was necessary for the fungus-response, although there were another five W-box-like elements in BjC-P. In addition, gain-of-function analysis demonstrated that the fragment (−409 to −337) coupled to the W-box-like element was needed for full magnitude of the fungal induction. These results revealed the existence of a novel regulation mechanism of W-box-like element involved in plant pathogenic resistance, and will benefit the potential application of BjC-P in engineering crops.

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Arabidopsis triphosphate tunnel metalloenzyme2 (AtTTM2) is a negative regulator of the salicylic acid-mediated feedback amplification loop for defense responses

Abstract

The triphosphate tunnel metalloenzyme (TTM) superfamily represents a group of enzymes that are characterized by their ability to hydrolyze a range of tripolyphosphate substrates. Arabidopsis, encodes three TTM genes, AtTTM1, 2 and 3. Although AtTTM3 has previously been reported to have polytriphosphatase activity, recombinantly expressed AtTTM2 unexpectedly exhibited pyrophosphatase activity. AtTTM2 knockout (KO) mutant plants exhibit an enhanced hypersensitive response, elevated pathogen resistance against both virulent and avirulent pathogens, and elevated accumulation of salicylic acid (SA) upon infection. In addition, stronger systemic acquired resistance (SAR) compared to wild type plants was observed. These enhanced defense responses are dependent on SA, PAD4, and NPR1. Despite their enhanced pathogen resistance, ttm2 plants did not display constitutively active defense responses, suggesting that AtTTM2 is not a conventional negative regulator, but a negative regulator of the amplification of defense responses. The transcriptional suppression of AtTTM2 by pathogen infection or treatment with SA or the SAR activator, BTH, further supports this notion. Such transcriptional regulation is conserved among TTM2 orthologues in the crop plants, soybean and canola, suggesting that TTM2 is involved in immunity in a wide variety of plant species. This indicates the possible usage of TTM2 KO mutants for agricultural application to generate pathogen resistant crop plants.

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Response of an aspartic protease gene OsAP77 to fungal, bacterial and viral infections in rice

AbstractBackground

Aspartic protease (APs) plays important roles in plant growth, development and biotic and abiotic stresses. We previously reported that the expression of a rice AP gene (OsAP77, Os10g0537800) was induced by probenazole (PBZ), a chemical inducer of disease resistance. In this study we examined some characteristics of this gene in response to fungal, bacterial and viral pathogens.

Results

To elucidate the spatial and temporal expression of OsAP77, the chimeric gene was constructed carrying the structural gene encoding β-glucuronidase (GUS) driven by the OsAP77 promoter. This construct was introduced into rice and the transgenic lines were tested to analyze gene expression by fungal, bacterial and viral infections. Inoculation with Magnaporthe oryzae or Xanthomonas oryzaepv. oryzae revealed the enhanced GUS activities in vascular tissues surrounding the symptom sites by each pathogen. Moreover, GUS activity also increased after inoculation with Cucumber mosaic virus(CMV). Transgenic plants immersed in a solution containing salicylic acid (SA), isonicotinic acid (INA), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) or abscisic acid (ABA) showed an increased level of GUS activity exclusively in vascular tissues. RT-PCR analysis showed that OsAP77 was induced not only by infection with these pathogens, but also after treatment with SA, INA, H2O2 or ABA. A knockout mutant line of OsAP77 by the insertion of Tos17 after inoculation with M. oryzae, X. oryzae pv. oryzaeor CMV showed an enhanced susceptibility compared to wild type.

Conclusion

These results suggest that the expression of OsAP77 is induced by pathogen infection and defense related signaling molecules in a vascular tissue specific manner and that this gene has a positive role of defense response against fungal, bacterial and viral infections.

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NLR-Associating Transcription Factor bHLH84 and Its Paralogs Function Redundantly in Plant Immunity

NLR-Associating Transcription Factor bHLH84 and Its Paralogs Function Redundantly in Plant Immunity | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it
Abstract

In plants and animals, nucleotide-binding and leucine-rich repeat domain containing (NLR) immune receptors are utilized to detect the presence or activities of pathogen-derived molecules. However, the mechanisms by which NLR proteins induce defense responses remain unclear. Here, we report the characterization of one basic Helix-loop-Helix (bHLH) type transcription factor (TF), bHLH84, identified from a reverse genetic screen. It functions as a transcriptional activator that enhances the autoimmunity of NLR mutant snc1 (suppressor of npr1-1, constitutive 1) and confers enhanced immunity in wild-type backgrounds when overexpressed. Simultaneously knocking out three closely related bHLH paralogs attenuates RPS4-mediated immunity and partially suppresses the autoimmune phenotypes of snc1, while overexpression of the other two close paralogs also renders strong autoimmunity, suggesting functional redundancy in the gene family. Intriguingly, the autoimmunity conferred by bHLH84overexpression can be largely suppressed by the loss-of-function snc1-r1 mutation, suggesting that SNC1 is required for its proper function. In planta co-immunoprecipitation revealed interactions between not only bHLH84 and SNC1, but also bHLH84 and RPS4, indicating that bHLH84 associates with these NLRs. Together with previous finding that SNC1 associates with repressor TPR1 to repress negative regulators, we hypothesize that nuclear NLR proteins may interact with both transcriptional repressors and activators during immune responses, enabling potentially faster and more robust transcriptional reprogramming upon pathogen recognition.

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From filaments to function: The role of the plant actin cytoskeleton in pathogen perception, signaling and immunity - Journal of Integrative Plant Biology

The eukaryotic actin cytoskeleton is required for numerous cellular processes, including cell shape, development and movement, gene expression and signal transduction, and response to biotic and abiotic stress. In recent years, research in both plants and animal systems have described a function for actin as the ideal surveillance platform, linking the function and activity of primary physiological processes to the immune system. In this review, we will highlight recent advances that have defined the regulation and breadth of function of the actin cytoskeleton as a network required for defense signaling following pathogen infection. Coupled with an overview of recent work demonstrating specific targeting of the plant actin cytoskeleton by a diversity of pathogens, including bacteria, fungi, and viruses, we will highlight the importance of actin as a key signaling hub in plants, one that mediates surveillance of cellular homeostasis and the activation of specific signaling responses following pathogen perception. Based on the studies highlighted herein, we propose a working model that posits changes in actin filament organization is in and of itself a highly specific signal, which induces, regulates, and physically directs stimulus-specific signaling processes, most importantly, those associated with response to pathogens.
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Pipecolic acid orchestrates plant systemic acquired resistance and defense priming via salicylic acid-dependent and independent pathways - The Plant Cell

We investigated the interrelation of the two immune-regulatory plant metabolites salicylic acid (SA) and pipecolic acid (Pip) in the establishment of plant systemic acquired resistance (SAR), SAR-associated defense priming, and basal immunity. Using SA-deficient sid2, Pip-deficient ald1, and sid2 ald1 plants deficient in both SA and Pip, we show that SA and Pip act both independently from each other and synergistically in Arabidopsis basal immunity to Pseudomonas syringae. Transcriptome analyses reveal that SAR establishment in Arabidopsis is characterized by a strong transcriptional response systemically induced in the foliage that prepares plants for future pathogen attack by pre-activating multiple stages of defense signaling, and that SA accumulation upon SAR activation leads to the down-regulation of photosynthesis and attenuated jasmonate-responses systemically in the plant. Whereas systemic Pip elevations are indispensable for SAR and necessary for virtually the whole transcriptional SAR response, a moderate but significant SA-independent component of SAR activation and SAR gene expression is revealed. During SAR, Pip orchestrates SA-dependent and SA-independent priming of pathogen responses in a FLAVIN-DEPENDENT-MONOOXYGENASE1 (FMO1)-dependent manner. We conclude that a Pip/FMO1-signaling module acts as an indispensable switch for the activation of SAR and associated defense priming events, and that SA amplifies Pip-triggered responses to different degrees in the distal tissue of SAR-activated plants.
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Comparative metabolomic analysis highlights the involvement of sugars and glycerol in melatonin-mediated innate immunity against bacterial pathogen in Arabidopsis - Scientific Reports

Melatonin is an important secondary messenger in plant innate immunity against the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringe pv. tomato (Pst) DC3000 in the salicylic acid (SA)- and nitric oxide (NO)-dependent pathway. However, the metabolic homeostasis in melatonin-mediated innate immunity is unknown. In this study, comparative metabolomic analysis found that the endogenous levels of both soluble sugars (fructose, glucose, melibose, sucrose, maltose, galatose, tagatofuranose and turanose) and glycerol were commonly increased after both melatonin treatment and Pst DC3000 infection in Arabidopsis. Further studies showed that exogenous pre-treatment with fructose, glucose, sucrose, or glycerol increased innate immunity against Pst DC3000 infection in wild type (Col-0) Arabidopsis plants, but largely alleviated their effects on the innate immunity in SA-deficient NahG plants and NO-deficient mutants. This indicated that SA and NO are also essential for sugars and glycerol-mediated disease resistance. Moreover, exogenous fructose, glucose, sucrose and glycerol pre-treatments remarkably increased endogenous NO level, but had no significant effect on the endogenous melatonin level. Taken together, this study highlights the involvement of sugars and glycerol in melatonin-mediated innate immunity against bacterial pathogen in SA and NO-dependent pathway in Arabidopsis.
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Frontiers | Influence of Rhizoctonia solani and Trichoderma spp. in growth of bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) and in the induction of plant defense-related genes | Crop Science and Horticulture

Frontiers | Influence of Rhizoctonia solani and Trichoderma spp. in growth of bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) and in the induction of plant defense-related genes | Crop Science and Horticulture | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it
Many Trichoderma species are well-known for their ability to promote plant growth and defence. We study how the interaction of bean plants with R. solani and/or Trichoderma affect the plants growth and the level of expression of defence-related genes. Trichoderma isolates were evaluated in vitro for their potential to antagonize R. solani. Bioassays were performed in climatic chambers and development of the plants was evaluated. The effect of Trichoderma treatment and/or R. solani infection on the expression of bean defence-related genes was analysed by real-time PCR and the production of ergosterol and squalene was quantified. In vitro growth inhibition of R. solani was between 86% and 58%. In In in vivo assays, the bean plants treated with Trichoderma harzianum T019 always had an increased size respect to control and the plants treated with this isolate did not decrease their size in presence of R. solani. The interaction of plants with R. solani and/or Trichoderma affects the level of expression of seven defence-related genes. Squalene and ergosterol production differences were found among the Trichoderma isolates, T019 showing the highest values for both compounds. T. harzianum T019 shows a positive effect on the level of resistance of bean plants to R. solani. This strain induces the expression of plant defence-related genes and produces a higher level of ergosterol, indicating its ability to grow at a higher rate in the soil, which would explain its positive effects on plant growth and defence in the presence of the pathogen.
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Two Theobroma cacao genotypes with contrasting pathogen tolerance show aberrant transcriptional and ROS responses after salicylic acid treatment

Understanding the genetic basis of pathogen susceptibility in various crop plants is crucial to increasing the stability of food, feed, and fuel production. Varietal differences in defence responses provide insights into the mechanisms of resistance and are a key resource for plant breeders. To explore the role of salicylic acid in the regulation of defence in cacao, we demonstrated that SA treatment decreased susceptibility to a pod rot pathogen, Phytophthora tropicalis in two genotypes, Scavina 6 and Imperial College Selection 1, which differ in their resistance to several agriculturally important pathogens. Transient overexpression of TcNPR1, a major transcriptional regulator of the SA-dependent plant immune system, also increased pathogen tolerance in cacao leaves. To explore further the genetic basis of resistance in cacao, we used microarrays to measure gene expression profiles after salicylic acid (SA) treatment in these two cacao genotypes. The two genotypes displayed distinct transcriptional responses to SA. Unexpectedly, the expression profile of the susceptible genotype ICS1 included a larger number of pathogenesis-related genes that were induced by SA at 24h after treatment, whereas genes encoding many chloroplast and mitochondrial proteins implicated in reactive oxygen species production were up-regulated in the resistant genotype, Sca6. Sca6 accumulated significantly more superoxide at 24h after treatment of leaves with SA. These experiments revealed critical insights regarding the molecular differences between cacao varieties, which will allow a better understanding of defence mechanisms to help guide breeding programmes.

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Tomato yellow leaf curl virus differentially influences plant defense responses to a vector and a non-vector herbivore - Su - Plant, Cell & Environment - Wiley Online Library

Tomato yellow leaf curl virus differentially influences plant defense responses to a vector and a non-vector herbivore - Su - Plant, Cell & Environment - Wiley Online Library | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it

Plants frequently engage in simultaneous interactions with diverse classes of biotic antagonists. Differential induction of plant defense pathways by these antagonists, and interactions between pathways, can have important ecological implications; however, these effects are currently not well understood. We explored how Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) influenced the performance of its vector (Bemisia tabaci) and a non-vector herbivore (Tetranychus urticae) occurring separately or together on tomato plants (Solanum lycopersicum). TYLCV enhanced the performance of B. tabaci, though this effect was statistically significant only in the absence of T. urticae, which adversely affectedB. tabaci performance regardless of infection status. In contrast, the performance of T. urticae was enhanced (only) by the combined presence of TYLCV and B. tabaci. Analyses of phytohormone levels and defense gene expression in wild-type tomatoes and various plant-defense mutants indicate that the enhancement of herbivore performance (for each species) entails the disruption of downstream defenses in the jasmonic acid (JA) pathway. For T. urticae, this disruption appears to involve antagonistic effects of salicylic acid (SA), which is cumulatively induced to high levels by B. tabaci and TYLCV. In contrast, TYLCV was found to suppress JA-mediated responses to B. tabaci via mechanisms independent of SA. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

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Reactive oxygen species and plant resistance to fungal pathogens

Abstract

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) have been studied for their role in plant development as well as in plant immunity. ROS were consistently observed to accumulate in the plant after the perception of pathogens and microbes and over the years, ROS were postulated to be an integral part of the defence response of the plant. In this article we will focus on recent findings about ROS involved in the interaction of plants with pathogenic fungi. We will describe the ways to detect ROS, their modes of action and their importance in relation to resistance to fungal pathogens. In addition we include some results from works focussing on the fungal interactor and from studies investigating roots during pathogen attack.

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Variation in Capsidiol Sensitivity between Phytophthora infestans and Phytophthora capsici Is Consistent with Their Host Range

Variation in Capsidiol Sensitivity between Phytophthora infestans and Phytophthora capsici Is Consistent with Their Host Range | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it
Abstract

Plants protect themselves against a variety of invading pathogenic organisms via sophisticated defence mechanisms. These responses include deployment of specialized antimicrobial compounds, such as phytoalexins, that rapidly accumulate at pathogen infection sites. However, the extent to which these compounds contribute to species-level resistance and their spectrum of action remain poorly understood. Capsidiol, a defense related phytoalexin, is produced by several solanaceous plants including pepper and tobacco during microbial attack. Interestingly, capsidiol differentially affects growth and germination of the oomycete pathogensPhytophthora infestans and Phytophthora capsici, although the underlying molecular mechanisms remain unknown. In this study we revisited the differential effect of capsidiol on P. infestans and P. capsici, using highly pure capsidiol preparations obtained from yeast engineered to express the capsidiol biosynthetic pathway. Taking advantage of transgenicPhytophthora strains expressing fluorescent markers, we developed a fluorescence-based method to determine the differential effect of capsidiol on Phytophtora growth. Using these assays, we confirm major differences in capsidiol sensitivity between P. infestans and P. capsici and demonstrate that capsidiol alters the growth behaviour of both Phytophthoraspecies. Finally, we report intraspecific variation within P. infestans isolates towards capsidiol tolerance pointing to an arms race between the plant and the pathogens in deployment of defence related phytoalexins.

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Chemical defense lowers plant competitiveness - Online First - Springer

Chemical defense lowers plant competitiveness - Online First - Springer | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it
Abstract

Both plant competition and plant defense affect biodiversity and food web dynamics and are central themes in ecology research. The evolutionary pressures determining plant allocation toward defense or competition are not well understood. According to the growth–differentiation balance hypothesis (GDB), the relative importance of herbivory and competition have led to the evolution of plant allocation patterns, with herbivore pressure leading to increased differentiated tissues (defensive traits), and competition pressure leading to resource investment towards cellular division and elongation (growth-related traits). Here, we tested the GDB hypothesis by assessing the competitive response of lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus) plants with quantitatively different levels of cyanogenesis—a constitutive direct, nitrogen-based defense against herbivores. We used high (HC) and low cyanogenic (LC) genotypes in different competition treatments (intra-genotypic, inter-genotypic, interspecific), and in the presence or absence of insect herbivores (Mexican bean beetle, Epilachna varivestis) to quantify vegetative and generative plant parameters (above and belowground biomass as well as seed production). Highly defended HC-plants had significantly lower aboveground biomass and seed production than LC-plants when grown in the absence of herbivores implying significant intrinsic costs of plant cyanogenesis. However, the reduced performance of HC- compared to LC-plants was mitigated in the presence of herbivores. The two plant genotypes exhibited fundamentally different responses to various stresses (competition, herbivory). Our study supports the GDB hypothesis by demonstrating that competition and herbivory affect different plant genotypes differentially and contributes to understanding the causes of variation in defense within a single plant species.

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Identification of fungus-responsive cis-acting element in the promoter of Brassica juncea chitinase gene, BjCHI1

Abstract

Chitinases are a group of pathogenesis-related proteins. The Brassica juncea chitinase gene BjCHI1 is highly inducible by pathogenic fungal infection, suggesting that the promoter of BjCHI1 might contain specific cis-acting element responsive to fungal attack. To identify the fungus-responsive element inBjCHI1 promoter (BjC-P), a series of binary plant transformation vectors were constructed by fusing the BjC-P or its deletion-derivatives to β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene. Expression of the GUS reporter gene was systematically assayed by a transient gene expression system in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves treated with fungal elicitor Hexa-N-Acetyl-Chitohexaose, as well as in transgenic Arabidopsis plants inoculated with fungus Botrytis cinerea. The histochemical and quantitative GUS assays showed that the W-box-like element (GTAGTGACTCAT) in the region (−668 to −657) was necessary for the fungus-response, although there were another five W-box-like elements in BjC-P. In addition, gain-of-function analysis demonstrated that the fragment (−409 to −337) coupled to the W-box-like element was needed for full magnitude of the fungal induction. These results revealed the existence of a novel regulation mechanism of W-box-like element involved in plant pathogenic resistance, and will benefit the potential application of BjC-P in engineering crops.

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Tomato yellow leaf curl virus resistance by Ty-1 involves increased cytosine methylation of viral genomes and is compromised by cucumber mosaic virus infection

Abstract

Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) and related begomoviruses are a major threat to tomato production worldwide and, to protect against these viruses, resistance genes from different wild tomato species are introgressed. Recently, the Ty-1 resistance gene was identified, shown to code for an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase and to be allelic with Ty-3. Here we show that upon TYLCV challenging of resistant lines carryingTy-1 or Ty-3, low virus titers were detected concomitant with the production of relatively high levels of siRNAs whereas, in contrast, susceptible tomato Moneymaker (MM) revealed higher virus titers but lower amounts of siRNAs. Comparative analysis of the spatial genomic siRNA distribution showed a consistent and subtle enrichment for siRNAs derived from the V1 and C3 genes in Ty-1 and Ty-3. In plants containing Ty-2resistance the virus was hardly detectable, but the siRNA profile resembled the one observed in TYLCV-challenged susceptible tomato (MM). Furthermore, a relative hypermethylation of the TYLCV V1 promoter region was observed in genomic DNA collected from Ty-1 compared with that from (MM). The resistance conferred by Ty-1 was also effective against the bipartite tomato severe rugose begomovirus, where a similar genome hypermethylation of the V1 promoter region was discerned. However, a mixed infection of TYLCV with cucumber mosaic virus compromised the resistance. The results indicate that Ty-1 confers resistance to geminiviruses by increasing cytosine methylation of viral genomes, suggestive of enhanced transcriptional gene silencing. The mechanism of resistance and its durability toward geminiviruses under natural field conditions is discussed.

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Cloning of the Arabidopsis rwm1 gene for resistance to Watermelon mosaic virus points to a new function for natural virus resistance genes - Ouibrahim - 2014 - The Plant Journal - Wiley Online Library

Cloning of the Arabidopsis rwm1 gene for resistance to Watermelon mosaic virus points to a new function for natural virus resistance genes - Ouibrahim - 2014 - The Plant Journal - Wiley Online Library | Interactions plante-pathogène plante-ravageur | Scoop.it
Summary

Arabidopsis thaliana represents a valuable and efficient model to understand mechanisms underlying plant susceptibility to viral diseases. Here, we describe the identification and molecular cloning of a new gene responsible for recessive resistance to several isolates ofWatermelon mosaic virus (WMV, genus Potyvirus) in the Arabidopsis Cvi-0 accession. rwm1 acts at an early stage of infection by impairing viral accumulation in initially infected leaf tissues. Map-based cloning delimited rwm1 on chromosome 1 in a 114-kb region containing 30 annotated genes. Positional and functional candidate gene analysis suggested that rwm1 encodes cPGK2 (At1g56190), an evolutionary conserved nucleus-encoded chloroplast phosphoglycerate kinase with a key role in cell metabolism. Comparative sequence analysis indicates that a single amino acid substitution (S78G) in the N-terminal domain of cPGK2 is involved in rwm1-mediated resistance. This mutation may have functional consequences because it targets a highly conserved residue, affects a putative phosphorylation site and occurs within a predicted nuclear localization signal. Transgenic complementation in Arabidopsis together with virus-induced gene silencing inNicotiana benthamiana confirmed that cPGK2 corresponds to rwm1 and that the protein is required for efficient WMV infection. This work uncovers new insight into natural plant resistance mechanisms that may provide interesting opportunities for the genetic control of plant virus diseases.

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