Kumho Life and Environmental Science Laboratory, Korea Kumho Petrochemical Co., Ltd., 1 Oryong-Dong, Puk-Ku, Kwangju 500-712, Korea
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Accepted 31 August 1999.
The anthracnose fungus, Colletotrichum gloeosporioides, was previously shown to have an incompatible interaction with ripe-red fruit of pepper (Capsicum annuum). However, the fungus had a compatible interaction with unripe-mature-green fruit. Using mRNA differential display, we isolated and characterized a PepCYP gene expressed in the incompatible interaction. The PepCYP gene encodes a protein homologous to cytochrome P450 proteins containing a heme-binding domain. The expression level of PepCYP is higher in the incompatible interaction than in the compatible interaction, and then remains elevated in the incompatible interaction. In the compatible interaction, the expression of PepCYP is transient. The induction of Pep-CYP gene is up-regulated by wounding or jasmonic acid treatment during ripening. Analysis of PepCYP expression by in situ hybridization shows that the accumulation of PepCYP mRNA is localized in the epidermal cell layers, but not in the cortical cell layers. An examination of transverse sections of the fruits inoculated with the fungus shows that the fungus invades and colonizes the epidermal cell layers of the unripe fruit at 24 and 72 h after inoculation, respectively, but not those of the ripe fruit. These results suggest that the PepCYP gene product plays a role in the defense mechanism when the fungus invades and colonizes the epidermal cells of fruits in the incompatible interaction during the early fungal infection process.
© 1999 The American Phytopathological Society