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BWMK1, a Novel MAP Kinase Induced by Fungal Infection and Mechanical Wounding in Rice

December 1999 , Volume 12 , Number  12
Pages  1,064 - 1,073

Chaozu He , Steven Haw Tien Fong , Daichang Yang , and Guo-Liang Wang

Institute of Molecular Agrobiology, The National University of Singapore, 1 Research Link, Singapore 117604

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Accepted 25 August 1999.

The activation of the mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinases by different environmental stresses has been previously observed in several dicot plant species. Here, we report the isolation of a novel MAP kinase in rice that is induced during infection by the blast fungus Magnaporthe grisea or upon mechanical wounding. The gene is designated as BWMK1 for blast- and wound-induced MAP kinase. The cDNA of BWMK1 was isolated from rice leaves challenged by the blast pathogen. Transcripts of the corresponding gene accumulated in rice leaves 4 h after blast inoculation and 30 min after mechanical wounding. This gene encodes a 506 amino acid protein that contains a new dual-phosphorylation activation motif TDY and about 150 unique amino acids on its C terminus. In-gel kinase activity and immunoprecipitation assays confirmed that BWMK1 is a functional MAP kinase. These results show that BWMK1 is a new member of the plant MAP kinase family and may mediate both defense and wound signaling in rice.

Additional keywords: Oryza sativa, rice blast.

© 1999 The American Phytopathological Society