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Salicylic Acid Is Involved in the Nb-Mediated Defense Responses to Potato virus X in Solanum tuberosum

April 2010 , Volume 23 , Number  4
Pages  394 - 405

Gerardo Sánchez,1 Nadia Gerhardt,1 Florencia Siciliano,1 Adrián Vojnov,2 Isabelle Malcuit,3 and María Rosa Marano1

1Instituto de Biología Molecular y Celular de Rosario (IBR-CONICET), área Virología, Facultad de Ciencias Bioquímicas y Farmacéuticas, Universidad Nacional de Rosario, Suipacha 531, 2000, Rosario, Argentina; 2Fundación Pablo Cassará, Saladillo 2468 C1440FFX, Ciudad de Buenos Aires, Argentina; 3Algentech Ltd, Institute of Food Research, Norwich Research Park, Norwich NR4 7UA, U.K.

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Accepted 7 December 2009.

To evaluate the role of salicylic acid (SA) in Nb-mediated hypersensitive resistance to Potato virus X (PVX) avirulent strain ROTH1 in Solanum tuberosum, we have constructed SA-deficient transgenic potato plant lines by overexpressing the bacterial enzyme salicylate hydroxylase (NahG), which degrades SA. Evaluation of these transgenic lines revealed hydrogen peroxide accumulation and spontaneous lesion formation in an age- and light-dependent manner. In concordance, NahG potato plants were more sensitive to treatment with methyl viologen, a reactive oxygen species--generating compound. In addition, when challenged with PVX ROTH1, NahG transgenic lines showed a decreased disease-resistance response to infection and were unable to induce systemic acquired resistance. However, the avirulent viral effector, the PVX 25-kDa protein, does induce expression of the pathogenesis-related gene PR-1a in NahG potato plants. Taken together, our data indicate that SA is involved in local and systemic defense responses mediated by the Nb gene in Solanum tuberosum. This is the first report to show that basal levels of SA correlate with hypersensitive resistance to PVX.

© 2010 The American Phytopathological Society