Interplay of Pathogen-Induced Defense Responses and Symbiotic Establishment in Medicago truncatula.
ABSTRACT: Suppression of host innate immunity appears to be required for the establishment of symbiosis between rhizobia and host plants. In this study, we established a system that included a host plant, a bacterial pathogen and a symbiotic rhizobium to study the role of innate immunity during symbiotic interactions. A pathogenic bacterium, Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato strain DC3000 (Pst DC3000), was shown to cause chlorosis in Medicago truncatula A17. Sinorhizobium meliloti strain Sm2011 (Sm2011) and Pst DC3000 strain alone induced similar defense responses in M. truncatula. However, when co-inoculated, Sm2011 specifically suppressed the defense responses induced by Pst DC3000, such as MAPK activation and ROS production. Inoculation with Sm2011 suppressed the transcription of defense-related genes triggered by Pst DC3000 infection, including the receptor of bacterial flagellin (FLS2), pathogenesis-related protein 10 (PR10), and the transcription factor WRKY33. Interestingly, inoculation with Pst DC3000 specifically inhibited the expression of the symbiosis marker genes nodule inception and nodulation pectate lyase and reduced the numbers of infection threads and nodules on M. truncatula A17 roots, indicating that Pst DC3000 inhibits the establishment of symbiosis in M. truncatula. In addition, defense-related genes, such as MAPK3/6, RbohC, and WRKY33, exhibited a transient increase in their expression in the early stage of symbiosis with Sm2011, but the expression dropped down to normal levels at later symbiotic stages. Our results suggest that plant innate immunity plays an antagonistic role in symbiosis by directly reducing the numbers of infection threads and nodules.
Project description:Sinorhizobium meliloti forms symbiotic, nitrogen-fixing nodules on the roots of Medicago truncatula. The bacteria invade and colonize the roots through structures called infection threads. S. meliloti unable to produce the exopolysaccharide succinoglycan are unable to establish a symbiosis because they are defective in initiating the production of infection threads and in invading the plant. Here, we use microarrays representing 16,000 M. truncatula genes to compare the differential transcriptional responses of this host plant to wild-type and succinoglycan-deficient S. meliloti at the early time point of 3 days postinoculation. This report describes an early divergence in global plant gene expression responses caused by a rhizobial defect in succinoglycan production, rather than in Nod factor production. The microarray data show that M. truncatula inoculated with wild-type, succinoglycan-producing S. meliloti more strongly express genes encoding translation components, protein degradation machinery, and some nodulins than plants inoculated with succinoglycan-deficient bacteria. This finding is consistent with wild-type-inoculated plants having received a signal, distinct from the well characterized Nod factor, to alter their metabolic activity and prepare for invasion. In contrast, M. truncatula inoculated with succinoglycan-deficient S. meliloti more strongly express an unexpectedly large number of genes in two categories: plant defense responses and unknown functions. One model consistent with our results is that appropriate symbiotically active exopolysaccharides act as signals to plant hosts to initiate infection thread formation and that, in the absence of this signal, plants terminate the infection process, perhaps via a defense response.
Project description:Plants possess an exceedingly complex innate immune system to defend against most pathogens. However, a relative proportion of the pathogens overcome host's innate immunity and impair plant growth and productivity. We previously showed that mutation in purple acid phosphatase (PAP5) lead to enhanced susceptibility of Arabidopsis to the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000 (Pst DC3000). Here, we report that an optimal level of PAP5 is crucial for mounting complete basal resistance. Overexpression of PAP5 impaired ICS1, PR1 expression and salicylic acid (SA) accumulation similar to pap5 knockout mutant plants. Moreover, plant overexpressing PAP5 was impaired in H2O2 accumulation in response to Pst DC3000. PAP5 is localized in to peroxisomes, a known site of generation of reactive oxygen species for activation of defense responses. Taken together, our results demonstrate that optimal levels of PAP5 is required for mounting resistance against Pst DC3000 as both knockout and overexpression of PAP5 lead to compromised basal resistance.
Project description:Plant NF-Y transcription factors control a wide array of biological functions enabling appropriate reproductive and developmental processes as well as adaptation to various abiotic and biotic environments. In Medicago truncatula, MtNF-YA1 was previously identified as a key determinant for nodule development and establishment of rhizobial symbiosis. Here, we highlight a new role for this protein in compatibility to Aphanomyces euteiches, a root pathogenic oomycete. The Mtnf-ya1-1 mutant plants showed better survival rate, reduced symptoms, and increased development of their root apparatus as compared to their wild-type (WT) background A17. MtNF-YA-1 was specifically up-regulated by A. euteiches in F83005.5, a highly susceptible natural accession of M. truncatula while transcript level remained stable in A17, which is partially resistant. The role of MtNF-YA1 in F83005.5 susceptibility was further documented by reducing MtNF-YA1 expression either by overexpression of the miR169q, a microRNA targeting MtNF-YA1, or by RNAi approaches leading to a strong enhancement in the resistance of this susceptible line. Comparative analysis of the transcriptome of WT and Mtnf-ya1-1 led to the identification of 1509 differentially expressed genes. Among those, almost 36 defense-related genes were constitutively expressed in Mtnf-ya1-1, while 20 genes linked to hormonal pathways were repressed. In summary, we revealed an unexpected dual role for this symbiotic transcription factor as a key player in the compatibility mechanisms to a pathogen.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The adage from Shakespeare, "troubles, not as single spies, but in battalions come," holds true for Nicotiana attenuata, which is commonly attacked by both pathogens (Pseudomonas spp.) and herbivores (Manduca sexta) in its native habitats. Defense responses targeted against the pathogens can directly or indirectly influence the responses against the herbivores. Nadefensin is an effective induced defense gene against the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato (PST DC3000), which is also elicited by attack from M. sexta larvae, but whether this defense protein influences M. sexta's growth and whether M. sexta-induced Nadefensin directly or indirectly influences PST DC3000 resistance are unknown. RESULTS:M. sexta larvae consumed less on WT and on Nadefensin-silenced N. attenuata plants that had previously been infected with PST DC3000 than on uninfected plants. WT plants infected with PST DC3000 showed enhanced resistance to PST DC3000 and decreased leaf consumption by M. sexta larvae, but larval mass gain was unaffected. PST DC3000-infected Nadefensin-silenced plants were less resistant to subsequent PST DC3000 challenge, and on these plants, M. sexta larvae consumed less and gained less mass. WT and Nadefensin-silenced plants previously damaged by M. sexta larvae were better able to resist subsequent PST DC3000 challenges than were undamaged plants. CONCLUSION:These results demonstrate that Na-defensin directly mediates defense against PST DC3000 and indirectly against M. sexta in N. attenuata. In plants that were previously infected with PST DC3000, the altered leaf chemistry in PST DC3000-resistant WT plants and PST DC3000-susceptible Nadefensin-silenced plants differentially reduced M. sexta's leaf consumption and mass gain. In plants that were previously damaged by M. sexta, the combined effect of the altered host plant chemistry and a broad spectrum of anti-herbivore induced metabolomic responses was more effective than Nadefensin alone in resisting PST DC3000.
Project description:Auxin response factors (ARFs) bind specifically to auxin response elements (AuxREs) in the promoters of down-stream target genes and play roles in plant responses to diverse environmental factors. Using the latest updated Medicago truncatula reference genome sequence, a comprehensive characterization and analysis of 24 MtARF (M. truncatula ARF) genes were performed. To uncover the basic information and functions of MtARF genes during symbiosis, we analyzed the expression patterns of MtARF genes during the early phase of Sinorhizobium meliloti infection. The systematic analysis indicated that changes in MtARF gene expression occur during these early stages of infection, suggesting a functional role in symbiosis. Furthermore, the roles of MtARF-mediated auxin signaling in symbiosis were tested in the infection resistant mutant (dmi3). The expression responses of MtARFs to S. meliloti infection were attenuated in the mutant compared to wild-type A17. In summary, our results show that changes in MtARF gene expression occur during the response to S. meliloti infection, suggesting that members of this family may have important roles in the symbiotic interaction.
Project description:Publication title: Pseudonodule formation by wild type and symbiotic mutant Medicago truncatula in response to auxin transport inhibitors This SuperSeries is composed of the following subset Series: GSE27991: Expression data of Medicago truncatula Jemalong A17 roots treated with auxin transport inhibitors GSE28171: Expression data of Medicago truncatula Jemalong A17 roots treated with S. meliloti exoA mutant or auxin transport inhibitors GSE28172: Expression data of Medicago truncatula skl1-1 roots treated with S. meliloti wild-type or auxin transport inhibitors GSE28173: Genes differentially expressed in wild-type Medicago truncatula plants during nodulation Refer to individual Series
Project description:Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is an important metabolite which functions in plant growth, development, and stress responses. However, its role in plant defense and how it is regulated are largely unknown. Here, we report a detailed analysis of GABA induction during the resistance response to Pseudomonas syringae in Arabidopsis thaliana. While searching for the mechanism underlying the pathogen-responsive mitogen-activated protein kinase (MPK)3/MPK6 signaling cascade in plant immunity, we found that activation of MPK3/MPK6 greatly induced GABA biosynthesis, which is dependent on the glutamate decarboxylase genes GAD1 and GAD4. Inoculation with Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato DC3000 (Pst) and Pst-avrRpt2 expressing the avrRpt2 effector gene induced GAD1 and GAD4 gene expression and increased the levels of GABA. Genetic evidence revealed that GAD1, GAD2, and GAD4 play important roles in both GABA biosynthesis and plant resistance in response to Pst-avrRpt2 infection. The gad1/2/4 triple and gad1/2/4/5 quadruple mutants, in which the GABA levels were extremely low, were more susceptible to both Pst and Pst-avrRpt2. Functional loss of MPK3/MPK6, or their upstream MKK4/MKK5, or their downstream substrate WRKY33 suppressed the induction of GAD1 and GAD4 expression after Pst-avrRpt2 treatment. Our findings shed light on both the regulation and role of GABA in the plant immunity to a bacterial pathogen.
Project description:Resistance mechanisms to Verticillium wilt are well-studied in tomato, cotton, and Arabidopsis, but much less in legume plants. Because legume plants establish nitrogen-fixing symbioses in their roots, resistance to root-attacking pathogens merits particular attention. The interaction between the soil-borne pathogen Verticillium alfalfae and the model legume Medicago truncatula was investigated using a resistant (A17) and a susceptible (F83005.5) line. As shown by histological analyses, colonization by the pathogen was initiated similarly in both lines. Later on, the resistant line A17 eliminated the fungus, whereas the susceptible F83005.5 became heavily colonized. Resistance in line A17 does not involve homologs of the well-characterized tomato Ve1 and V. dahliae Ave1 genes. A transcriptomic study of early root responses during initial colonization (i.e., until 24 h post-inoculation) similarly was performed. Compared to the susceptible line, line A17 displayed already a significantly higher basal expression of defense-related genes prior to inoculation, and responded to infection with up-regulation of only a small number of genes. Although fungal colonization was still low at this stage, the susceptible line F83005.5 exhibited a disorganized response involving a large number of genes from different functional classes. The involvement of distinct phytohormone signaling pathways in resistance as suggested by gene expression patterns was supported by experiments with plant hormone pretreatment before fungal inoculation. Gene co-expression network analysis highlighted five main modules in the resistant line, whereas no structured gene expression was found in the susceptible line. One module was particularly associated to the inoculation response in A17. It contains the majority of differentially expressed genes, genes associated with PAMP perception and hormone signaling, and transcription factors. An in silico analysis showed that a high number of these genes also respond to other soil-borne pathogens in M. truncatula, suggesting a core of transcriptional response to root pathogens. Taken together, the results suggest that resistance in M. truncatula line A17 might be due to innate immunity combining preformed defense and PAMP-triggered defense mechanisms, and putative involvement of abscisic acid.
Project description:Trehalose and its metabolism have been demonstrated to play important roles in control of plant growth, development, and stress responses. However, direct genetic evidence supporting the functions of trehalose and its metabolism in defense response against pathogens is lacking. In the present study, genome-wide characterization of putative trehalose-related genes identified 11 SlTPSs for trehalose-6-phosphate synthase, 8 SlTPPs for trehalose-6-phosphate phosphatase and one SlTRE1 for trehalase in tomato genome. Nine SlTPSs, 4 SlTPPs, and SlTRE1 were selected for functional analyses to explore their involvement in tomato disease resistance. Some selected SlTPSs, SlTPPs, and SlTRE1 responded with distinct expression induction patterns to Botrytis cinerea and Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato (Pst) DC3000 as well as to defense signaling hormones (e.g., salicylic acid, jasmonic acid, and a precursor of ethylene). Virus-induced gene silencing-mediated silencing of SlTPS3, SlTPS4, or SlTPS7 led to deregulation of ROS accumulation and attenuated the expression of defense-related genes upon pathogen infection and thus deteriorated the resistance against B. cinerea or Pst DC3000. By contrast, silencing of SlTPS5 or SlTPP2 led to an increased expression of the defense-related genes upon pathogen infection and conferred an increased resistance against Pst DC3000. Silencing of SlTPS3, SlTPS4, SlTPS5, SlTPS7, or SlTPP2 affected trehalose level in tomato plants with or without infection of B. cinerea or Pst DC3000. These results demonstrate that SlTPS3, SlTPS4, SlTPS5, SlTPS7, and SlTPP2 play roles in resistance against B. cinerea and Pst DC3000, implying the importance of trehalose and tis metabolism in regulation of defense response against pathogens in tomato.
Project description:The nitrogen-fixing rhizobial symbiont Sinorhizobium meliloti 1021 produces acidic symbiotic exopolysaccharides that enable it to initiate and maintain infection thread formation on host legume plants. The exopolysaccharide that is most efficient in mediating this process is succinoglycan (exopolysaccharide I [EPSI]), a polysaccharide composed of octasaccharide repeating units of 1 galactose and 7 glucose residues, modified with succinyl, acetyl, and pyruvyl substituents. Previous studies had shown that S. meliloti 1021 mutants that produce increased levels of succinoglycan, such as exoR mutants, are defective in symbiosis with host plants, leading to the hypothesis that high levels of succinoglycan production might be detrimental to symbiotic development. This study demonstrates that increased succinoglycan production itself is not detrimental to symbiotic development and, in fact, enhances the symbiotic productivity of S. meliloti 1021 with the host plant Medicago truncatula cv. Jemalong A17. Increased succinoglycan production was engineered by overexpression of the exoY gene, which encodes the enzyme responsible for the first step in succinoglycan biosynthesis. These results suggest that the level of symbiotic exopolysaccharide produced by a rhizobial species is one of the factors involved in optimizing the interaction with plant hosts.