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A Putative RNA-Binding Protein Positively Regulates Salicylic Acid–Mediated Immunity in Arabidopsis

December 2010 , Volume 23 , Number  12
Pages  1,573 - 1,583

Yiping Qi,1 Kenichi Tsuda,1 Anna Joe,2,3 Masanao Sato,1 Le V. Nguyen,1 Jane Glazebrook,1 James R. Alfano,2 Jerry D. Cohen,4 and Fumiaki Katagiri1

1Department of Plant Biology, Microbial and Plant Genomics Institute, University of Minnesota, 1500 Gortner Avenue, St. Paul 55108, U.S.A.; 2Center for Plant Science Innovation and Department of Plant Pathology and 3Center for Plant Science Innovation and School of Biological Sciences, University of Nebraska, Lincoln 68588, U.S.A.; and 4Department of Horticultural Science, University of Minnesota, 1970 Folwell Avenue, St. Paul, 55108, U.S.A.

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Accepted 2 July 2010.

RNA-binding proteins (RBP) can control gene expression at both transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. Plants respond to pathogen infection with rapid reprogramming of gene expression. However, little is known about how plant RBP function in plant immunity. Here, we describe the involvement of an RBP, Arabidopsis thaliana RNA-binding protein-defense related 1 (AtRBP-DR1; At4g03110), in resistance to the pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000. AtRBP-DR1 loss-of-function mutants showed enhanced susceptibility to P. syringae pv. tomato DC3000. Overexpression of AtRBP-DR1 led to enhanced resistance to P. syringae pv. tomato DC3000 strains and dwarfism. The hypersensitive response triggered by P. syringae pv. tomato DC3000 avrRpt2 was compromised in the Atrbp-dr1 mutant and enhanced in the AtRBP-DR1 overexpression line at early time points. AtRBP-DR1 overexpression lines showed higher mRNA levels of SID2 and PR1, which are salicylic acid (SA) inducible, as well as spontaneous cell death in mature leaves. Consistent with these observations, the SA level was low in the Atrbp-dr1 mutant but high in the overexpression line. The SA-related phenotype in the overexpression line was fully dependent on SID2. Thus, AtRBP-DR1 is a positive regulator of SA-mediated immunity, possibly acting on SA signaling-related genes at a post-transcriptional level.

© 2010 The American Phytopathological Society