1Signaux et Messages Cellulaires chez les Végétaux, UMR CNRS-UPS 5546, Pôle de Biotechnologie Végétale, BP 17, 31326 Castanet-Tolosan Cedex, France; 2Centre de Recherche sur les Macromolécules Végétales, CNRS UPR 5301, BP 53, 38041 Grenoble Cedex 9, France; 3Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire des Relations Plantes-Microorganismes, UMR INRA-CNRS 215 BP 27, 31326 Castanet-Tolosan Cedex, France
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Accepted 19 April 2002.
The lipo-chitooligosaccharidic Nod factors produced by rhizobia are key molecules in the establishment of symbiosis with legumes and probably are recognized by the host plant via specific receptors. Here, we report on the presence of a binding site in cell cultures of Phaseolus vulgaris displaying a high affinity for Nod factors from Rhizobium tropici (NodRt-V) (Me, S, C18:1), a symbiont of this legume. The binding site shares common properties with NFBS2, a Nod-factor binding site previously characterised in Medicago varia, in terms of affinity, preferential plasma-membrane location, and sensitivity to proteases and lysine reactive reagents. However, the bean site poorly recognizes the Nod factors produced by Sinorhizobium meliloti, the symbiont of Medicago. The study of selectivity toward the Nod factors reveals that the length and degree of unsaturation of the acyl chain and the length of the oligosaccharidic moiety are important determinants of high affinity binding to the bean site; whereas, the N-methyl and O-sulfuryl groups play a minor role. Thus, the common characteristics of P. vulgaris and M. varia Nod-factor binding sites suggest that they probably correspond to structurally related proteins, but their different selectivity suggests that they may be involved in a differential perception system for Nod factors in legumes.
© 2002 The American Phytopathological Society