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Identification and Characterization of a Soybean Ethylene-Responsive Element-Binding Protein Gene Whose mRNA Expression Changes During Soybean Cyst Nematode Infection

June 2002 , Volume 15 , Number  6
Pages  577 - 586

Mitra Mazarei , 1 David P. Puthoff , 1 Jennifer K. Hart , 1 Steven R. Rodermel , 2 and Thomas J. Baum 1

1Department of Plant Pathology, and 2Department of Botany, Iowa State University, Bessey Hall, Ames, IA 50011 U.S.A.

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Accepted 8 February 2002.

Ethylene-responsive element-binding proteins (EREBPs) are members of a family of plant transcription factors. Conserved EREBP domains of these proteins bind to the GCC box, an ethylene-responsive promoter element found in many pathogenesis-related (PR) genes. Using degenerate primers to the EREBP domain from diverse plant species, an EREBP homolog was isolated from a soybean cDNA library. Gel mobility-shift assays revealed that the translation product of this cDNA bound specifically to GCC box sequences. We, therefore, named this gene Glycine max ethylene-responsive element-binding protein 1 (GmEREBP1), i.e., a gene coding for the first confirmed GCC box-binding protein of soybean. GmEREBP1 mRNA abundance was analyzed by RNA blot hybridizations in soybean roots and shoots of cultivars Corsoy 79 and Hartwig, which are susceptible and resistant, respectively, to the soybean cyst nematode (Heterodera glycines). These analyses revealed that GmEREBP1 is expressed in a root-preferential manner and that GmEREBP1 mRNA abundance is changed after H. glycines infection. GmEREBP1 mRNA abundance decreased in infected (susceptible) ‘Corsoy 79’ roots, whereas it increased in abundance in infected (resistant) ‘Hartwig’ roots. Furthermore, ethephon treatment repressed GmEREBP1 mRNA accumulation in both cultivars, whereas wounding increased expression in both cultivars. These changes in mRNA steady-state levels suggest that GmEREBP1 plays a role in soybean-H. glycines interactions.

Additional keywords: AP2 , Arabidopsis thaliana , DNA-binding domain , syncytium .

© 2002 The American Phytopathological Society