Glycan-binding F-box protein from Arabidopsis thaliana protects plants from Pseudomonas syringae infection

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Abstract

Background: A small group of F-box proteins consisting of a conserved F-box domain linked to a domain homologous to the glycan-binding protein has been identified within the genome of Arabidopsis thaliana. Previously, the so-called F-box-Nictaba protein, encoded by the gene At2g02360, was shown to be a functional lectin which binds N-acetyllactosamine structures. Here, we present a detailed qRT-PCR expression analysis of F-box-Nictaba in Arabidopsis plants upon different stresses and hormone treatments. Results: Expression of the F-box-Nictaba gene was enhanced after plant treatment with salicylic acid and after plant infection with the virulent Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato strain DC3000 (Pst DC3000). β-glucuronidase histochemical staining of transgenic Arabidopsis plants displayed preferential activity of the At2g02360 promoter in trichomes present on young rosette leaves. qRT-PCR analyses confirmed high expression of F-box-Nictaba in leaf trichomes. A. thaliana plants overexpressing the gene showed less disease symptoms after Pst DC3000 infection with reduced bacterial colonization compared to infected wild type and F-box-Nictaba knock-out plants. Conclusions: Our data show that the Arabidopsis F-box-Nictaba gene is a stress-inducible gene responsive to SA, bacterial infection and heat stress, and is involved in salicylic acid related plant defense responses. This knowledge enriched our understanding of the physiological importance of F-box-Nictaba, and can be used to create plants with better performance in changing environmental conditions.

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Stefanowicz, K., Lannoo, N., Zhao, Y., Eggermont, L., Van Hove, J., Al Atalah, B., & Van Damme, E. J. M. (2016). Glycan-binding F-box protein from Arabidopsis thaliana protects plants from Pseudomonas syringae infection. BMC Plant Biology, 16(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12870-016-0905-2

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