July 19, 2019  |  

TAL effector driven induction of a SWEET gene confers susceptibility to bacterial blight of cotton.

Authors: Cox, Kevin L and Meng, Fanhong and Wilkins, Katherine E and Li, Fangjun and Wang, Ping and Booher, Nicholas J and Carpenter, Sara C D and Chen, Li-Qing and Zheng, Hui and Gao, Xiquan and Zheng, Yi and Fei, Zhangjun and Yu, John Z and Isakeit, Thomas and Wheeler, Terry and Frommer, Wolf B and He, Ping and Bogdanove, Adam J and Shan, Libo

Transcription activator-like (TAL) effectors from Xanthomonas citri subsp. malvacearum (Xcm) are essential for bacterial blight of cotton (BBC). Here, by combining transcriptome profiling with TAL effector-binding element (EBE) prediction, we show that GhSWEET10, encoding a functional sucrose transporter, is induced by Avrb6, a TAL effector determining Xcm pathogenicity. Activation of GhSWEET10 by designer TAL effectors (dTALEs) restores virulence of Xcm avrb6 deletion strains, whereas silencing of GhSWEET10 compromises cotton susceptibility to infections. A BBC-resistant line carrying an unknown recessive b6 gene bears the same EBE as the susceptible line, but Avrb6-mediated induction of GhSWEET10 is reduced, suggesting a unique mechanism underlying b6-mediated resistance. We show via an extensive survey of GhSWEET transcriptional responsiveness to different Xcm field isolates that additional GhSWEETs may also be involved in BBC. These findings advance our understanding of the disease and resistance in cotton and may facilitate the development cotton with improved resistance to BBC.

Journal: Nature communications
DOI: 10.1038/ncomms15588
Year: 2017

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