Background: Plant immune responses can be induced by endogenous and exogenous signaling molecules. Recently, amino acids and their metabolites have been reported to affect the plant immune system. However, how amino acids act in plant defense responses has yet to be clarified. Here, we report that treatment of rice roots with amino acids such as glutamate (Glu) induced systemic disease resistance against rice blast in leaves. Results: Treatment of roots with Glu activated the transcription of a large variety of defense-related genes both in roots and leaves. In leaves, salicylic acid (SA)-responsive genes, rather than jasmonic acid (JA) or ethylene (ET)-responsive genes, were induced by this treatment. The Glu-induced blast resistance was partially impaired in rice plants deficient in SA signaling such as NahG plants expressing an SA hydroxylase, WRKY45-knockdown, and OsNPR1-knockdown plants. The JA-deficient mutant cpm2 exhibited full Glu-induced blast resistance. Conclusions: Our results indicate that the amino acid-induced blast resistance partly depends on the SA pathway but an unknown SA-independent signaling pathway is also involved.
Kadotani, N., Akagi, A., Takatsuji, H., Miwa, T., & Igarashi, D. (2016). Exogenous proteinogenic amino acids induce systemic resistance in rice. BMC Plant Biology, 16(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12870-016-0748-x