The powdery mildew disease represents a valuable patho-system to study the interaction between plant hosts and obligate biotrophic fungal pathogens. Numerous discoveries have been made on the basis of the quantitative evaluation of plant-powdery mildew interactions, especially in the context of hyper-susceptible and/or resistant plant mutants. However, the presently available methods to score the pathogenic success of powdery mildew fungi are laborious and thus not well suited for medium- to high-throughput analysis.
Here we present two new protocols that allow the rapid quantitative assessment of powdery mildew disease development. One procedure depends on quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR)-based evaluation of fungal biomass, while the other relies on the quantification of fungal conidiospores. We validated both techniques using the powdery mildew pathogen Golovinomyces orontii on a set of hyper-susceptible and resistant Arabidopsis thaliana mutants and found that both cover a wide dynamic range of one to two (qPCR) and four to five (quantification of conidia) orders of magnitude, respectively. The two approaches yield reproducible results and are easy to perform without specialized equipment.
The qPCR and spore count assays rapidly and reproducibly quantify powdery mildew pathogenesis. Our methods are performed at later stages of infection and discern mutant phenotypes accurately. The assays therefore complement currently used procedures of powdery mildew quantification and can overcome some of their limitations. In addition, they can easily be adapted to other plant-powdery mildew patho-systems.
Arabidopsis thaliana; Conidiospores; Golovinomyces orontii; Powdery mildew; Quantification; qPCR
The powdery mildew diseases, caused by fungal species of the Erysiphales, have an important economic impact on a variety of plant species and have driven basic and applied research efforts in the field of phytopathology for many years. Although the first taxonomic reports on the Erysiphales date back to the 1850's, advances into the molecular biology of these fungal species have been hampered by their obligate biotrophic nature and difficulties associated with their cultivation and genetic manipulation in the laboratory. The discovery in the 1990's of a few species of powdery mildew fungi that cause disease on Arabidopsis has opened a new chapter in this research field. The great advantages of working with a model plant species have translated into remarkable progress in our understanding of these complex pathogens and their interaction with the plant host. Herein we summarize advances in the study of Arabidopsis-powdery mildew interactions and discuss their implications for the general field of plant pathology. We provide an overview of the life cycle of the pathogens on Arabidopsis and describe the structural and functional changes that occur during infection in the host and fungus in compatible and incompatible interactions, with special emphasis on defense signaling, resistance pathways, and compatibility factors. Finally, we discuss the future of powdery mildew research in anticipation of the sequencing of multiple powdery mildew genomes. The cumulative body of knowledge on powdery mildews of Arabidopsis provides a valuable tool for the study and understanding of disease associated with many other obligate biotrophic pathogen species.
Background and Aims
Functional–structural modelling can be used to increase our understanding of how different aspects of plant structure and function interact, identify knowledge gaps and guide priorities for future experimentation. By integrating existing knowledge of the different aspects of the kiwifruit (Actinidia deliciosa) vine's architecture and physiology, our aim is to develop conceptual and mathematical hypotheses on several of the vine's features: (a) plasticity of the vine's architecture; (b) effects of organ position within the canopy on its size; (c) effects of environment and horticultural management on shoot growth, light distribution and organ size; and (d) role of carbon reserves in early shoot growth.
Using the L-system modelling platform, a functional–structural plant model of a kiwifruit vine was created that integrates architectural development, mechanistic modelling of carbon transport and allocation, and environmental and management effects on vine and fruit growth. The branching pattern was captured at the individual shoot level by modelling axillary shoot development using a discrete-time Markov chain. An existing carbon transport resistance model was extended to account for several source/sink components of individual plant elements. A quasi-Monte Carlo path-tracing algorithm was used to estimate the absorbed irradiance of each leaf.
Several simulations were performed to illustrate the model's potential to reproduce the major features of the vine's behaviour. The model simulated vine growth responses that were qualitatively similar to those observed in experiments, including the plastic response of shoot growth to local carbon supply, the branching patterns of two Actinidia species, the effect of carbon limitation and topological distance on fruit size and the complex behaviour of sink competition for carbon.
The model is able to reproduce differences in vine and fruit growth arising from various experimental treatments. This implies it will be a valuable tool for refining our understanding of kiwifruit growth and for identifying strategies to improve production.
Actinidia deliciosa; kiwifruit; L-systems; plant architecture; carbon allocation; functional–structural plant model
Autophagy is a conserved intracellular recycling system that traffics cellular organelles and cytosolic proteins within lysosomes for reuse or breakdown in eukaryotes. Increased evidence indicates that autophagy is involved in programmed cell death and disease resistance in plants. We recently showed that atg2, atg5, atg7 and atg10 displayed early senescence and cell death in later growth stage under nutrient-rich conditions in Arabidopsis thaliana. These mutants also exhibited powdery mildew resistance and mildew-induced cell death. Salicylic acid (SA) signaling is required for atg2-mediated powdery mildew resistance, however, inactivation of SA signaling is not sufficient to fully suppress powdery mildew-induced cell death in atg2 mutant.1 Here, we show that atg18a-2 is also resistant to the powdery mildew pathogen, Golovinomyces cichoracearum, and it shows mildew-induced cell death similar to the atg2 mutant. Taken together, our study reveals that autophagy plays important roles in suppression of cell death and defense response to the biotrophic pathogen, the powdery mildew fungus. Future work on autophagy in plants will shine light on how autophagy is involved in cell death and defense response in plants.
autophagy; cell death; defense response; ATG2; ATG18a; powdery mildew
Powdery mildews are a diverse group of pathogenic fungi that can infect a large number of plant species, including many economically important crops. However, basic and applied research on these devastating diseases has been hampered by the obligate biotrophic lifestyle of the pathogens, which require living host cells for growth and reproduction, and lacking genetic and molecular tools for important host plants. The establishment of Arabidopsis thaliana as a host of different powdery mildew species allowed pursuing new strategies to study the molecular mechanisms governing these complex plant–pathogen interactions. Nitric oxide (NO) has emerged as an important signaling molecule in plants, which is produced upon infection and involved in activation of plant immune responses. However, the source and pathway of NO production and its precise function in the regulatory network of reactions leading to resistance is still unknown. We studied the response of Arabidopsis
thaliana to infection with the adapted powdery mildew, Golovinomyces orontii (compatible interaction) and the non-adapted, Erysiphe pisi (incompatible interaction). We observed that NO accumulated rapidly and transiently at infection sites and we established a correlation between the resistance phenotype and the amount and timing of NO production. Arabidopsis mutants with defective immune response accumulated lower NO levels compared to wild type. Conversely, increased NO levels, generated by treatment with chemicals or expression of a NO-synthesizing enzyme, resulted in enhanced resistance, but only sustained NO production prevented excessive leaf colonization by the fungus, which was not achieved by a short NO burst although this reduced the initial penetration success. By contrast, lowered NO levels did not impair the ultimate resistance phenotype. Although our results suggest a function of NO in mediating plant immune responses, a direct impact on pathogen growth and development cannot be excluded.
disease resistance; plant defense signaling; plant immunity; plant-microbe interaction; powdery mildew; Golovinomyces orontii; Erysiphe pisi
Biotrophic eukaryotic plant pathogens require a living host for their growth and form an intimate haustorial interface with parasitized cells. Evolution to biotrophy occurred independently in fungal rusts and powdery mildews, and in oomycete white rusts and downy mildews. Biotroph evolution and molecular mechanisms of biotrophy are poorly understood. It has been proposed, but not shown, that obligate biotrophy results from (i) reduced selection for maintenance of biosynthetic pathways and (ii) gain of mechanisms to evade host recognition or suppress host defence. Here we use Illumina sequencing to define the genome, transcriptome, and gene models for the obligate biotroph oomycete and Arabidopsis parasite, Albugo laibachii. A. laibachii is a member of the Chromalveolata, which incorporates Heterokonts (containing the oomycetes), Apicomplexa (which includes human parasites like Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii), and four other taxa. From comparisons with other oomycete plant pathogens and other chromalveolates, we reveal independent loss of molybdenum-cofactor-requiring enzymes in downy mildews, white rusts, and the malaria parasite P. falciparum. Biotrophy also requires “effectors” to suppress host defence; we reveal RXLR and Crinkler effectors shared with other oomycetes, and also discover and verify a novel class of effectors, the “CHXCs”, by showing effector delivery and effector functionality. Our findings suggest that evolution to progressively more intimate association between host and parasite results in reduced selection for retention of certain biosynthetic pathways, and particularly reduced selection for retention of molybdopterin-requiring biosynthetic pathways. These mechanisms are not only relevant to plant pathogenic oomycetes but also to human pathogens within the Chromalveolata.
Plant pathogens that cannot grow except on their hosts are called obligate biotrophs. How such biotrophy evolves is poorly understood. In this study, we sequenced the genome of the obligate biotroph white rust pathogen (Albugo laibachii, Oomycota) of Arabidopsis. From comparisons with other oomycete plant pathogens, diatoms, and the human pathogen Plasmodium falciparum, we reveal a loss of important metabolic enzymes. We also reveal the appearance of defence-suppressing “effectors”, some carrying motifs known from other oomycete effectors, and discover and experimentally verify a novel class of effectors that share a CHXC motif within 50 amino acids of the signal peptide cleavage site. Obligate biotrophy involves an intimate association within host cells at the haustorial interface (where the parasite penetrates the host cell's cell wall), where nutrients are acquired from the host and effectors are delivered to the host. We found that A. laibachii, like Hyaloperonospora arabidopsidis and Plasmodium falciparum, lacks molybdopterin-requiring biosynthetic pathways, suggesting relaxed selection for retention of, or even selection against, this pathway. We propose that when defence suppression becomes sufficiently effective, hosts become such a reliable source of nutrients that a free-living phase can be lost. These mechanisms leading to obligate biotrophy and host specificity are relevant not only to plant pathogenic oomycetes but also to human pathogens.
Biotrophic pathogens, like the powdery mildew fungi, require living plant cells for their growth and reproduction. During infection, a specialized structure called the haustorium is formed by the fungus. The haustorium is surrounded by a plant cell-derived extrahaustorial membrane (EHM). Over the EHM, the fungus obtains nutrients from and secretes effector proteins into the plant cell. In the plant cell these effectors interfere with cellular processes such as pathogen defense and membrane trafficking. However, the mechanisms behind effector delivery are largely unknown. This paper provides a model for and new insights into a putative transfer mechanism of effectors into the plant cell. We show that silencing of the barley Sec61βa transcript results in decreased susceptibility to the powdery mildew fungus. HvSec61βa is a component of both the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) translocon and retrotranslocon pores, the latter being part of the ER-associated protein degradation machinery. We provide support for a model suggesting that the retrotranslocon function of HvSec61βa is required for successful powdery mildew fungal infection. HvSec61βa-GFP and a luminal ER marker were co-localized to the ER, which was found to be in close proximity to the EHM around the haustorial body, but not the haustorial fingers. This differential EHM proximity suggests that the ER, including HvSec61βa, may be actively recruited by the haustorium, potentially to provide efficient effector transfer to the cytosol. Effector transport across this EHM-ER interface may occur by a vesicle-mediated process, while the Sec61 retrotranslocon pore potentially provides an escape route for these proteins to reach the cytosol.
powdery mildew; haustorium; extrahaustorial membrane (EHM); endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation (ERAD); Sec61 complex; susceptibility factor
Protein effectors of pathogenicity are instrumental in modulating host immunity and disease resistance. The powdery mildew pathogen of grasses Blumeria graminis causes one of the most important diseases of cereal crops. B. graminis is an obligate biotrophic pathogen and as such has an absolute requirement to suppress or avoid host immunity if it is to survive and cause disease.
Here we characterise a superfamily predicted to be the full complement of Candidates for Secreted Effector Proteins (CSEPs) in the fungal barley powdery mildew parasite B. graminis f.sp. hordei. The 491 genes encoding these proteins constitute over 7% of this pathogen’s annotated genes and most were grouped into 72 families of up to 59 members. They were predominantly expressed in the intracellular feeding structures called haustoria, and proteins specifically associated with the haustoria were identified by large-scale mass spectrometry-based proteomics. There are two major types of effector families: one comprises shorter proteins (100–150 amino acids), with a high relative expression level in the haustoria and evidence of extensive diversifying selection between paralogs; the second type consists of longer proteins (300–400 amino acids), with lower levels of differential expression and evidence of purifying selection between paralogs. An analysis of the predicted protein structures underscores their overall similarity to known fungal effectors, but also highlights unexpected structural affinities to ribonucleases throughout the entire effector super-family. Candidate effector genes belonging to the same family are loosely clustered in the genome and are associated with repetitive DNA derived from retro-transposons.
We employed the full complement of genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic analyses as well as structural prediction methods to identify and characterize the members of the CSEPs superfamily in B. graminis f.sp. hordei. Based on relative intron position and the distribution of CSEPs with a ribonuclease-like domain in the phylogenetic tree we hypothesize that the associated genes originated from an ancestral gene, encoding a secreted ribonuclease, duplicated successively by repetitive DNA-driven processes and diversified during the evolution of the grass and cereal powdery mildew lineage.
Host-pathogen interactions; Effector protein structure; Fungal proteomics; Proteogenomics
Background and Aims
The biotic and abiotic environment of interacting hosts and parasites may vary considerably over small spatial and temporal scales. It is essential to understand how different environments affect host disease resistance because this determines frequency of disease and, importantly, heterogeneous environments can retard direct selection and potentially maintain genetic variation for resistance in natural populations.
The effect of different temperatures and soil nutrient conditions on the outcome of infection by a pathogen was quantified in Arabidopsis thaliana. Expression levels of a gene conferring resistance to powdery mildews, RPW8, were compared with levels of disease to test a possible mechanism behind variation in resistance.
Most host genotypes changed from susceptible to resistant across environments with the ranking of genotypes differing between treatments. Transcription levels of RPW8 increased after infection and varied between environments, but there was no tight association between transcription and resistance levels.
There is a strong potential for a heterogeneous environment to change the resistance capacity of A. thaliana genotypes and hence the direction and magnitude of selection in the presence of the pathogen. Possible causative links between resistance gene expression and disease resistance are discussed in light of the present results on RPW8.
Genotype × environment interaction; RPW8; Arabidopsis thaliana; Golovinomyces orontii; powdery mildew; qPCR; temperature; plant × pathogen interaction; disease resistance
Isolates of the causal ascomycete of grapevine powdery mildew, Erysiphe necator, correspond to two genetically differentiated groups (A and B) that coexist on the same host. This coexistence was analyzed by investigating temporal changes in the genetic and phenotypic structures of E. necator populations during three epidemics. Group A was present only at the start of the growing season, whereas group B was present throughout all three epidemics. Group A was less aggressive in terms of germination and infection efficiency but was more aggressive than group B in terms of the latency period, lesion diameter, and spore production. Our results are consistent with a temporal differentiation of niches, preventing recombination, and suggest an association between the disease level and the frequencies of genetic groups.
In agricultural ecosystems, arthropod herbivores and fungal pathogens are likely to colonise the same plant and may therefore affect each other directly or indirectly. The fungus that causes powdery mildew (Blumeria graminis tritici) and cereal aphids are important pests of wheat but interactions between them have seldom been investigated. We studied the effects of powdery mildew of wheat on two cereal aphid species, Metopolophium dirhodum and Rhopalosiphum padi. We hypothesized that aphid number and size will be smaller on powdery mildew-infected plants than on non-infected plants. In a first experiment we used six commercially available wheat varieties whereas in the second experiment we used a genetically modified (GM) mildew-resistant wheat line and its non-transgenic sister line. Because the two lines differed only in the presence of the transgene and in powdery mildew resistance, experiment 2 avoided the confounding effect of variety. In both experiments, the number of M. dirhodum but not of R. padi was reduced by powdery mildew infection. Transgenic mildew-resistant lines therefore harboured bigger aphid populations than the non-transgenic lines. For both aphid species individual size was mostly influenced by aphid number. Our results indicate that plants that are protected from a particular pest (powdery mildew) became more favourable for another pest (aphids).
Background and Aims
The relationship between Septoria tritici, a splash-dispersed disease, and its host is complex because of the interactions between the dynamic plant architecture and the vertical progress of the disease. The aim of this study was to test the capacity of a coupled virtual wheat–Septoria tritici epidemic model (Septo3D) to simulate disease progress on the different leaf layers for contrasted sowing density treatments.
A field experiment was performed with winter wheat ‘Soissons’ grown at three contrasted densities. Plant architecture was characterized to parameterize the wheat model, and disease dynamic was monitored to compare with simulations. Three simulation scenarios, differing in the degree of detail with which plant variability of development was represented, were defined.
Despite architectural differences between density treatments, few differences were found in disease progress; only the lower-density treatment resulted in a slightly higher rate of lesion development. Model predictions were consistent with field measurements but did not reproduce the higher rate of lesion progress in the low density. The canopy reconstruction scenario in which inter-plant variability was taken into account yielded the best agreement between measured and simulated epidemics. Simulations performed with the canopy represented by a population of the same average plant deviated strongly from the observations.
It was possible to compare the predicted and measured epidemics on detailed variables, supporting the hypothesis that the approach is able to provide new insights into the processes and plant traits that contribute to the epidemics. On the other hand, the complex and dynamic responses to sowing density made it difficult to test the model precisely and to disentangle the various aspects involved. This could be overcome by comparing more contrasted and/or simpler canopy architectures such as those resulting from quasi-isogenic lines differing by single architectural traits.
Crop architecture; modelling; Septoria tritici; wheat; Triticum aestivum; sowing density; 3-D virtual plant model; plant–pathogen interaction
Biotrophic and hemibiotrophic fungi are successful groups of plant pathogens that require living plant tissue to survive and complete their life cycle. Members of these groups include the rust fungi and powdery mildews and species in the Ustilago, Cladosporium and Magnaporthe genera. Collectively, they represent some of the most destructive plant parasites, causing huge economic losses and threatening global food security. During plant infection, pathogens synthesise and secrete effector proteins, some of which are translocated into the plant cytosol where they can alter the host’s response to the invading pathogen. In a successful infection, pathogen effectors facilitate suppression of the plant’s immune system and orchestrate the reprogramming of the infected tissue so that it becomes a source of nutrients that are required by the pathogen to support its growth and development. This review summarizes our current understanding of the function of fungal effectors in infection.
Dehydrins (DHNs) protect plant cells from desiccation damage during environmental stress, and also participate in host resistance to various pathogens. In this study, we aimed to identify and characterize the DHN gene families from Vitis vinifera and wild V. yeshanensis, which is tolerant to both drought and cold, and moderately resistant to powdery mildew.
Four DHN genes were identified in both V. vinifera and V. yeshanensis, which shared a high sequence identity between the two species but little homology between the genes themselves. These genes were designated DHN1, DHN2, DHN3 and DHN4. All four of the DHN proteins were highly hydrophilic and were predicted to be intrinsically disordered, but they differed in their isoelectric points, kinase selectivities and number of functional motifs. Also, the expression profiles of each gene differed appreciably from one another. Grapevine DHN1 was not expressed in vegetative tissues under normal growth conditions, but was induced by drought, cold, heat, embryogenesis, as well as the application of abscisic acid (ABA), salicylic acid (SA), and methyl jasmonate (MeJA). It was expressed earlier in V. yeshanensis under drought conditions than in V. vinifera, and also exhibited a second round of up-regulation in V. yeshanensis following inoculation with Erysiphe necator, which was not apparent in V. vinifera. Like DHN1, DHN2 was induced by cold, heat, embryogenesis and ABA; however, it exhibited no responsiveness to drought, E. necator infection, SA or MeJA, and was also expressed constitutively in vegetative tissues under normal growth conditions. Conversely, DHN3 was only expressed during seed development at extremely low levels, and DHN4 was expressed specifically during late embryogenesis. Neither DHN3 nor DHN4 exhibited responsiveness to any of the treatments carried out in this study. Interestingly, the presence of particular cis-elements within the promoter regions of each gene was positively correlated with their expression profiles.
The grapevine DHN family comprises four divergent members. While it is likely that their functions overlap to some extent, it seems that DHN1 provides the main stress-responsive function. In addition, our results suggest a close relationship between expression patterns, physicochemical properties, and cis-regulatory elements in the promoter regions of the DHN genes.
Grapevine; Dehydrin; Stress-induced expression; Powdery mildew; Promoter
Background and Aims
In grapevine, canopy-structure-related variations in light interception and distribution affect productivity, yield and the quality of the harvested product. A simple statistical model for reconstructing three-dimensional (3D) canopy structures for various cultivar–training system (C × T) pairs has been implemented with special attention paid to balance the time required for model parameterization and accuracy of the representations from organ to stand scales. Such an approach particularly aims at overcoming the weak integration of interplant variability using the usual direct 3D measurement methods.
This model is original in combining a turbid-medium-like envelope enclosing the volume occupied by vine shoots with the use of discrete geometric polygons representing leaves randomly located within this volume to represent plant structure. Reconstruction rules were adapted to capture the main determinants of grapevine shoot architecture and their variability. Using a simplified set of parameters, it was possible to describe (1) the 3D path of the main shoot, (2) the volume occupied by the foliage around this path and (3) the orientation of individual leaf surfaces. Model parameterization (estimation of the probability distribution for each parameter) was carried out for eight contrasting C × T pairs.
Key Results and Conclusions
The parameter values obtained in each situation were consistent with our knowledge of grapevine architecture. Quantitative assessments for the generated virtual scenes were carried out at the canopy and plant scales. Light interception efficiency and local variations of light transmittance within and between experimental plots were correctly simulated for all canopies studied. The approach predicted these key ecophysiological variables significantly more accurately than the classical complete digitization method with a limited number of plants. In addition, this model accurately reproduced the characteristics of a wide range of individual digitized plants. Simulated leaf area density and the distribution of light interception among leaves were consistent with measurements. However, at the level of individual organs, the model tended to underestimate light interception.
Canopy; architecture; hemispherical; picture; light interception; radiative; balance; stochastic; modelling; virtual; plants
Powdery mildew and rust fungi are widespread, serious pathogens that depend on developing haustoria in the living plant cells. Haustoria are separated from the host cytoplasm by a plant cell-derived extrahaustorial membrane. They secrete effector proteins, some of which are subsequently transferred across this membrane to the plant cell to suppress defense.
In a cDNA library from barley epidermis containing powdery mildew haustoria, two-thirds of the sequenced ESTs were fungal and represented ~3,000 genes. Many of the most highly expressed genes encoded small proteins with N-terminal signal peptides. While these proteins are novel and poorly related, they do share a three-amino acid motif, which we named "Y/F/WxC", in the N-terminal of the mature proteins. The first amino acid of this motif is aromatic: tyrosine, phenylalanine or tryptophan, and the last is always cysteine. In total, we identified 107 such proteins, for which the ESTs represent 19% of the fungal clones in our library, suggesting fundamental roles in haustoria function. While overall sequence similarity between the powdery mildew Y/F/WxC-proteins is low, they do have a highly similar exon-intron structure, suggesting they have a common origin. Interestingly, searches of public fungal genome and EST databases revealed that haustoria-producing rust fungi also encode large numbers of novel, short proteins with signal peptides and the Y/F/WxC-motif. No significant numbers of such proteins were identified from genome and EST sequences from either fungi which do not produce haustoria or from haustoria-producing Oomycetes.
In total, we identified 107, 178 and 57 such Y/F/WxC-proteins from the barley powdery mildew, the wheat stem rust and the wheat leaf rust fungi, respectively. All together, our findings suggest the Y/F/WxC-proteins to be a new class of effectors from haustoria-producing pathogenic fungi.
Powdery mildew disease caused by Leveillula taurica is a serious fungal threat to greenhouse tomato and pepper production. In contrast to most powdery mildew species which are epiphytic, L. taurica is an endophytic fungus colonizing the mesophyll tissues of the leaf. In barley, Arabidopsis, tomato and pea, the correct functioning of specific homologues of the plant Mlo gene family has been found to be required for pathogenesis of epiphytic powdery mildew fungi. The aim of this study was to investigate the involvement of the Mlo genes in susceptibility to the endophytic fungus L. taurica. In tomato (Solanum lycopersicum), a loss-of-function mutation in the SlMlo1 gene results in resistance to powdery mildew disease caused by Oidium neolycopersici. When the tomato Slmlo1 mutant was inoculated with L. taurica in this study, it proved to be less susceptible compared to the control, S. lycopersicum cv. Moneymaker. Further, overexpression of SlMlo1 in the tomato Slmlo1 mutant enhanced susceptibility to L. taurica. In pepper, the CaMlo2 gene was isolated by applying a homology-based cloning approach. Compared to the previously identified CaMlo1 gene, the CaMlo2 gene is more similar to SlMlo1 as shown by phylogenetic analysis, and the expression of CaMlo2 is up-regulated at an earlier time point upon L. taurica infection. However, results of virus-induced gene silencing suggest that both CaMlo1 and CaMlo2 may be involved in the susceptibility of pepper to L. taurica. The fact that overexpression of CaMlo2 restored the susceptibility of the tomato Slmlo1 mutant to O. neolycopersici and increased its susceptibility to L. taurica confirmed the role of CaMlo2 acting as a susceptibility factor to different powdery mildews, though the role of CaMlo1 as a co-factor for susceptibility cannot be excluded.
Systemic effect of two plant growth-promoting rhizobacterial (PGPR) strains,viz., Pseudomonas fluorescens (Pf4) and P. aeruginosa (Pag), was evaluated on pea (Pisum sativum) against the powdery mildew pathogen Erysiphe pisi. Foliar spray of the two PGPR strains was done on specific nodal leaves of pea and conidial germination of E. pisi was observed on other nodal leaves,distal to the treated ones. Conidial germination was reduced on distant leaves and at the same time,specific as well as total phenolic compounds increased in the leaves distal to those applied with PGPR strains,thereby indicating a positive correlation. The strains induced accumulation of phenolic compounds in pea leaves and the amount increased when such leaves were get inoculated with E. pisi conidia. Between the two strains, Pag was found to be more effective than Pf4 as its effect was more persistent in pea leaves. Foliar application of PGPR strains for the control of powdery mildew of pea is demonstrated in vitro while correlating it with the increased accumulation of plant phenolics.
Erysiphe pisi; Foliar spray; Induced resistance; Pseudomonas aeruginosa; Pseudomonas fluorescens
Powdery mildew pathogens are biotrophic fungi that infect large number of plant species. EDR1 (ENHANCED DISEASE RESISTANCE 1) is a negative regulator of plant disease resistance, and loss-of-function in the EDR1 gene confers enhanced disease resistance to powdery mildew pathogen Golovinomyces cichoracearum. In an edr1 suppressor screen, we recently found that a mutation in HPR1, a component of the THO/TREX complex, suppresses edr1-mediated disease resistance, however the hpr1 mutation enhances the ethylene-induced senescence in edr1. The hpr1 single mutant displays enhanced susceptibility, indicating that HPR1 is involved in plant defense responses.1 THO/TREX is a conserved protein complex that functions in pre-mRNA processing and mRNA export. Several components of THO/TREX complex in Arabidopsis have been identified. By searching Arabidopsis database, we found that Arabidopsis (Columbia-0) has two copies of UAP56, another component of the THO/TREX complex, and the UAP56 proteins are highly conserved. Similar to human UAP56 protein, Arabidopsis UAP56 also localizes to the nucleus, showing a pattern similar to the splicing speckles. Further characterization of the components of THO/TREX in Arabidopsis will provide new insights into the role of THO/TREX in defense responses in plants.
HPR1; THO/TREX complex; UAP56; defense response; powdery mildew
Entry control of Arabidopsis thaliana against non-adapted powdery mildews largely depends on the PEN1 secretion pathway and the PEN2–PEN3 antifungal metabolite pathway, and is critical for non-host resistance. In a recent study, we reported that ENHANCED DISEASE RESISTANCE 1 (EDR1) plays a role in entry control against a non-adapted anthracnose fungus, which exhibits an infection style distinct from that of powdery mildews. Results obtained using edr1
pen2 double mutants indicate that the contribution of EDR1 to non-host resistance is independent of that of the PEN2-mediated defence pathway. Comparative transcript profiling revealed that EDR1 is critical for expression of four plant defensin genes. The MYC2-encoded transcription factor represses defensin expression. Inactivation of MYC fully restored defensin expression in edr1 mutants, implying that EDR1 cancels MYC2 function to regulate defensin expression. These findings indicate that EDR1 exerts a critical role in non-host resistance, in part by inducing antifungal peptide expression via interference in MYC2-mediated repressor function.
Arabidopsis; Colletotrichum; defensin; EDR1; MYC2; non-host resistance; preinvasive defence
To better dissect non-host resistance against haustorium-forming powdery mildew pathogens, a sow thistle powdery mildew isolate designated Golovinomyces cichoracearum UMSG1 that has largely overcome penetration resistance but is invariably stopped by post-invasion non-host resistance of Arabidopsis thaliana was identified. The post-invasion non-host resistance is mainly manifested as the formation of a callosic encasement of the haustorial complex (EHC) and hypersensitive response (HR), which appears to be controlled by both salicylic acid (SA)-dependent and SA-independent defence pathways, as supported by the susceptibility of the pad4/sid2 double mutant to the pathogen. While the broad-spectrum resistance protein RPW8.2 enhances post-penetration resistance against G. cichoracearum UCSC1, a well-adapted powdery mildew pathogen, RPW8.2, is dispensable for post-penetration resistance against G. cichoracearum UMSG1, and its specific targeting to the extrahaustorial membrane is physically blocked by the EHC, resulting in HR cell death. Taken together, the present work suggests an evolutionary scenario for the Arabidopsis–powdery mildew interaction: EHC formation is a conserved subcellular defence evolved in plants against haustorial invasion; well-adapted powdery mildew has evolved the ability to suppress EHC formation for parasitic growth and reproduction; RPW8.2 has evolved to enhance EHC formation, thereby conferring haustorium-targeted, broad-spectrum resistance at the post-invasion stage.
Callose; encasement of haustorial complex; extrahaustorial membrane; haustorium; jasmonic acid; non-host resistance; post-invasion resistance; powdery mildew; RPW8; salicylic acid
Powdery mildew is one of the most devastating diseases in cucurbits. Crop yield can decline as the disease severity increases. In this study, we evaluated the effect of silver nanoparticles against powdery mildew under different cultivation conditions in vitro and in vivo . Silver nanoparticles (WA-CV-WA13B) at various concentrations were applied before and after disease outbreak in plants to determine antifungal activities. In the field tests, the application of 100 ppm silver nanoparticles showed the highest inhibition rate for both before and after the outbreak of disease on cucumbers and pumpkins. Also, the application of 100 ppm silver nanoparticles showed maximum inhibition for the growth of fungal hyphae and conidial germination in in vivo tests. Scanning electron microscope results indicated that the silver nanoparticles caused detrimental effects on both mycelial growth and conidial germination.
Agricultural chemical; Inhibition effect; Powdery mildew; Silver nanoparticles
Oomycete pathogens cause diverse plant diseases. To successfully colonize their hosts, they deliver a suite of effector proteins that can attenuate plant defenses. In the oomycete downy mildews, effectors carry a signal peptide and an RxLR motif. Hyaloperonospora arabidopsidis (Hpa) causes downy mildew on the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis). We investigated if candidate effectors predicted in the genome sequence of Hpa isolate Emoy2 (HaRxLs) were able to manipulate host defenses in different Arabidopsis accessions. We developed a rapid and sensitive screening method to test HaRxLs by delivering them via the bacterial type-three secretion system (TTSS) of Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato DC3000-LUX (Pst-LUX) and assessing changes in Pst-LUX growth in planta on 12 Arabidopsis accessions. The majority (∼70%) of the 64 candidates tested positively contributed to Pst-LUX growth on more than one accession indicating that Hpa virulence likely involves multiple effectors with weak accession-specific effects. Further screening with a Pst mutant (ΔCEL) showed that HaRxLs that allow enhanced Pst-LUX growth usually suppress callose deposition, a hallmark of pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP)-triggered immunity (PTI). We found that HaRxLs are rarely strong avirulence determinants. Although some decreased Pst-LUX growth in particular accessions, none activated macroscopic cell death. Fewer HaRxLs conferred enhanced Pst growth on turnip, a non-host for Hpa, while several reduced it, consistent with the idea that turnip's non-host resistance against Hpa could involve a combination of recognized HaRxLs and ineffective HaRxLs. We verified our results by constitutively expressing in Arabidopsis a sub-set of HaRxLs. Several transgenic lines showed increased susceptibility to Hpa and attenuation of Arabidopsis PTI responses, confirming the HaRxLs' role in Hpa virulence. This study shows TTSS screening system provides a useful tool to test whether candidate effectors from eukaryotic pathogens can suppress/trigger plant defense mechanisms and to rank their effectiveness prior to subsequent mechanistic investigation.
Hyaloperonospora arabidopsidis (Hpa) is an obligate biotroph whose population coevolves with its host, Arabidopsis thaliana. The Hpa isolate Emoy2 genome has been sequenced, allowing the discovery of dozens of secreted candidate effectors. We set out to assign functions to these candidate effectors, investigating if they suppress host defenses. We analyzed a sub-set of Hpa candidate effectors (HaRxLs) that carry the RxLR motif, using a bacterial system for in planta delivery. To our surprise, we found that most of the HaRxLs enhanced plant susceptibility on at least some accessions, while few decreased it. These phenotypes were mostly confirmed on Arabidopsis transgenic lines stably expressing HaRxLs that became more susceptible to compatible Hpa isolates. Furthermore, effectors that conferred enhanced virulence generally suppressed callose deposition, a hallmark of plant defense. This indicates that the “effectorome” of Hpa comprises multiple distinct effectors that can attenuate Arabidopsis immunity. We found that many HaRxLs did not confer enhanced virulence on all host accessions, and also that only ∼50% of the effectors that conferred enhanced Pst growth on Arabidopsis, were able to do so on turnip, a non-host for Hpa. Our data reveal interesting HaRxLs for detailed mechanistic investigation in future experiments.
Wheat leaf rust, stem rust, stripe rust, and powdery mildew caused by the fungal pathogens Puccinia triticina, P. graminis f. sp. tritici, P. striiformis f. sp. tritici, and Blumeria graminis f. sp. tritici, respectively, are destructive diseases of wheat worldwide. Breeding durable disease resistance cultivars rely largely on continually introgressing new resistance genes, especially the genes with different defense mechanisms, into adapted varieties. Here, we describe a new resistance gene obtained by mutagenesis. The mutant, MNR220 (mutagenesis-derived new resistance), enhances resistance to three rusts and powdery mildew, with the characteristics of delayed disease development at the seedling stage and completed resistance at the adult plant stage. Genetic analysis demonstrated that the resistance in MNR220 is conferred by a single semidominant gene mapped on the short arm of chromosome 2B. Gene expression profiling of several pathogenesis-related genes indicated that MNR220 has an elevated and rapid pathogen-induced response. In addition to its potential use in breeding for resistance to multiple diseases, high-resolution mapping and cloning of the disease resistance locus in MNR220 may lead to a better understanding of the regulation of defense responses in wheat.
Powdery mildew, caused by the obligate biotrophic fungus Blumeria graminis, is a major problem in cereal production as it can reduce quality and yield. B. graminis has evolved eight distinct formae speciales (f.sp.) which display strict host specialization. In the last decade, powdery mildew has emerged on triticale, the artificial intergeneric hybrid between wheat and rye. This emergence is probably triggered by a host range expansion of the wheat powdery mildew B. graminis f.sp. tritici. To gain more precise information about the evolutionary processes that led to this host range expansion, we pursued a combined pathological and genetic approach.
B. graminis isolates were sampled from triticale, wheat and rye from different breeding regions in Europe. Pathogenicity tests showed that isolates collected from triticale are highly pathogenic on most of the tested triticale cultivars. Moreover, these isolates were also able to infect several wheat cultivars (their previous hosts), although a lower aggressiveness was observed compared to isolates collected from wheat. Phylogenetic analysis of nuclear gene regions identified two statistically significant clades, which to a certain extent correlated with pathogenicity. No differences in virulence profiles were found among the sampled regions, but the distribution of genetic variation demonstrated to be geography dependent. A multilocus haplotype network showed that haplotypes pathogenic on triticale are distributed at different sites in the network, but always clustered at or near the tips of the network.
This study reveals a genetic structure in B. graminis with population differentiation according to geography and host specificity. In addition, evidence is brought forward demonstrating that the host range expansion of wheat isolates to the new host triticale occurred recently and multiple times at different locations in Europe.
Renal cell carcinoma; Partial nephrectomy; Robotic partial nephrectomy; Oncologic outcomes; Nephron-sparing surgery