Link to home

The Yeast Signal Sequence Trap Identifies Secreted Proteins of the Hemibiotrophic Corn Pathogen Colletotrichum graminicola

October 2008 , Volume 21 , Number  10
Pages  1,325 - 1,336

Jorrit-Jan Krijger,1 Ralf Horbach,1 Michael Behr,1 Patrick Schweizer,2 Holger B. Deising,1 and Stefan G. R. Wirsel1

1Naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät III, Institut für Agrar- und Ernährungswissenschaften, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, Ludwig-Wucherer-Str. 2, D-06099 Halle (Saale), Germany; 2Leibniz-Institut für Pflanzengenetik und Kulturpflanzenforschung (IPK), Corrensstr. 3, D-06466 Gatersleben, Germany

Go to article:
Accepted 9 June 2008.

The hemibiotroph Colletotrichum graminicola is the causal agent of stem rot and leaf anthracnose on Zea mays. Following penetration of epidermal cells, the fungus enters a short biotrophic phase, followed by a destructive necrotrophic phase of pathogenesis. During both phases, secreted fungal proteins are supposed to determine progress and success of the infection. To identify genes encoding such proteins, we constructed a yeast signal sequence trap (YSST) cDNA-library from RNA extracted from mycelium grown in vitro on corn cell walls and leaf extract. Of the 103 identified unigenes, 50 showed significant similarities to genes with a reported function, 25 sequences were similar to genes without a known function, and 28 sequences showed no similarity to entries in the databases. Macroarray hybridization and quantitative reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction confirmed that most genes identified by the YSST screen are expressed in planta. Other than some genes that were constantly expressed, a larger set showed peaks of transcript abundances at specific phases of pathogenesis. Another set exhibited biphasic expression with peaks at the biotrophic and necrotrophic phase. Transcript analyses of in vitro-grown cultures revealed that several of the genes identified by the YSST screen were induced by the addition of corn leaf components, indicating that host-derived factors may have mimicked the host milieu.

Additional keywords:biotrophy, cell-wall-degrading enzymes, effector proteins, necrotrophy, peptidases.

© 2008 The American Phytopathological Society