Research Highlights: Pseudomonas syringae Gene Contribution to Apoplastic Fitness in Different Plant Hosts

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Tomato leaf (Lycopersicon esculentum) with bacterial speck (Pseudomonas syringae). Copyright Melodie Putnam 2009, Oregon State University. Image Source: http://sites.science.oregonstate.edu

Original Article: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0239998

  • A variety of traits are necessary for bacteria to colonize the interior of plant hosts.
  • These traits include well-studied virulence effectors as well as other phenotypes contributing to the growth of bacteria and survival within the apoplast.
  • Apoplast is the space outside the plasma membrane of a plant cell that allows free movement of material.
  • The major virulence strategy for plant bacteria is deployment of effector molecules within the host.
  • Effectors suppress immunity by targeting host molecules.
  • There are powerful tools that identify such genes in bacterial pathogens.
  • However, there is a lack of information as to the distinctiveness of traits required for bacterial colonization of different hosts.
  • Researchers identify the genes that contribute to the ability of Pseudomonas syringae strain to grow within common bean, lima bean, and pepper.
  • P. syringae is a rod shaped Gram-negative bacteria, with an aerobic metabolism, and polar flagella.
  • The magnitude of contribution of most genes to apoplastic fitness in each of the plant hosts was similar.
  • However, 50 genes significantly differed in their fitness contributions to growth within these species.
  • These genes encoded proteins in various functional categories including polysaccharide synthesis and transport, amino acid metabolism and transport, cofactor metabolism, and phytotoxin synthesis and transport.
  • Six other genes that encoded unannotated, hypothetical proteins also contributed differentially to growth in these hosts.
  • The genetic collection of a relatively promiscuous pathogen such as Psyringae may thus be shaped, at least in part, by the conditional contribution of some fitness determinants.

Source:

Helmann TC, Deutschbauer AM, Lindow SE (2020) Distinctiveness of genes contributing to growth of Pseudomonas syringae in diverse host plant species. PLoS ONE 15(9): e0239998. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0239998

https://www.sciencedirect.com/book/9780128130667/biochemical-physiological-and-molecular-avenues-for-combating-abiotic-stress-tolerance-in-plants

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20466583/

https://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.php/Pseudomonas_syringae

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