Recent Posts

The maize heterotrimeric G protein β subunit controls shoot meristem development and immune responses ($) (PNAS)

Heterotrimeric G proteins transduce signals between receptors and downstream factors. Previous genetic studies have shown diverse roles for these proteins based on loss-of-function phenotypes; for example mutations in Arabidopsis Gα and Gβ subunits both lead to enlarged shoot apical meristems. Wu et…

Three previously characterized resistances to yellow rust are encoded by a single locus Wtk1 (J. Exp. Bot.)

Yellow rust is a fungal disease of wheat. Three mutants with enhanced resistance were identified in wild emmer wheat from different locations were previously mapped to the same region of chromosome 1B. Given that each locus showed a different degree of resistance, it was presumed that they were non-allelic.…

Perception of Agrobacterium tumefaciens flagellin by FLS2XL confers resistance to crown gall disease (Nature Plants)

FLS2 is a well-characterized cell-surface receptor that recognizes a short epitope found on most bacterial flagellin proteins. The plant pathogen Agrobacterium tumefaciens, causative agent of crown gall disease, deviates strongly at this epitope region, and so is generally not recognized by FLS2 receptors,…

Pathogenic bacteria target plant plasmodesmata to colonize and invade surrounding tissues (Plant Cell)

Plasmodesmata are regulated channels that connect adjacent cells, allowing movement of metabolites, RNA, proteins, and pathogens. Plants close their plasmodesmata as part of their immune response, but this closure can be interfered with by pathogens. Aung et al. examined the repertoire of effector proteins…

Review: Surface sensor systems in plant immunity (Plant Physiol)

The first line of defense is detection. Plants have numerous cell-surface receptor proteins (Pattern Recognition Receptors, PRRs) that recognize potentially harmful pathogens as well as endogenous molecules that suggest damage, known as Damage Associated Molecular Patterns or DAMPS and phytocytokines…

Cleavage of a pathogen apoplastic protein by plant subtilases activates immunity

Plant-pathogen interactions are shaped by a dynamic signaling crosstalk that often leads to an arms-race between plants and pathogens. The initial pathogenic invasion starts in the apoplast, which serves as a major battlefield. This extracellular space is a harsh environment enriched with hydrolytic…

Perspective: Challenging battles of plants with phloem-feeding insects and prokaryotic pathogens (PNAS)

Much of our understanding of plant defense response is built upon the responses that occur in leaves. Many pathogens colonize the phloem system, which is both nutrient-rich and provides an easy conduit for spreading through systemically through the plant body. These phloem-inhabiting prokaryotic pathogens…

Dynamic ubiquitination determines transcriptional activity of the plant immune coactivator NPR1 (eLIFE)

Dynamic ubiquitination determines transcriptional activity of the plant immune coactivator NPR1 Plants (and animals) need to strike a delicate balance when activating their immune responses: not too much and not too little. The transcriptional coactivator NPR1 [nonexpressor of pathogenesis-related…

Understanding pathogenic bacterial gene expression in planta is essential to understand plant pathology (bioRxiv)

How exactly does the plant defense system target pathogens? Nobori et al. have analyzed interactions inside the plant between the foliar bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae and Arabidopsis thaliana at transcriptomic and proteomic levels by using RNAseq and liquid chromatography mass spectrometry…