Link to home

Pleiotropic Function of the Putative Zinc-Finger Protein MoMsn2 in Magnaporthe oryzae

May 2014 , Volume 27 , Number  5
Pages  446 - 460

Haifeng Zhang,1 Qian Zhao,1 Xianxian Guo,1 Min Guo,1 Zhongqiang Qi,1 Wei Tang,1 Yanhan Dong,1 Wenwu Ye,1 Xiaobo Zheng,1 Ping Wang,2 and Zhengguang Zhang1

1Department of Plant Pathology, College of Plant Protection, Nanjing Agricultural University, and Key Laboratory of Integrated Management of Crop Diseases and Pests, Ministry of Education, Nanjing 210095, China; 2Department of Pediatrics and The Research Institute for Children, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, Louisiana 70118, U.S.A.

Go to article:
Accepted 17 December 2013.

The mitogen-activated protein kinase MoOsm1–mediated osmoregulation pathway plays crucial roles in stress responses, asexual and sexual development, and pathogenicity in Magnaporthe oryzae. Utilizing an affinity purification approach, we identified the putative transcriptional activator MoMsn2 as a protein that interacts with MoOsm1 in vivo. Disruption of the MoMSN2 gene resulted in defects in aerial hyphal growth, conidial production, and infection of host plants. Quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis showed that the expression of several genes involved in conidiophore formation was reduced in ΔMomsn2, suggesting that MoMsn2 might function as a transcriptional regulator of these genes. Subsequently, MoCos1 was identified as one of the MoMsn2 targets through yeast one-hybrid analysis in which MoMsn2 binds to the AGGGG and CCCCT motif of the MoCOS1 promoter region. Phenotypic characterization showed that MoMsn2 was required for appressorium formation and penetration and pathogenicity. Although the ΔMomsn2 mutant was tolerant to the cell-wall stressor Calcofluor white, it was sensitive to common osmotic stressors. Further analysis suggests that MoMsn2 is involved in the regulation of the cell-wall biosynthesis pathway. Finally, transcriptome data revealed that MoMsn2 modulates numerous genes participating in conidiation, infection, cell-wall integrity, and stress response. Collectively, our results led to a model in which MoMsn2 mediates a series of downstream genes that control aerial hyphal growth, conidiogenesis, appressorium formation, cell-wall biosynthesis, and infection and that also offer potential targets for the development of new disease management strategies.

© 2014 The American Phytopathological Society