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VIEW ARTICLE   |    DOI: 10.1094/MPMI-5-384


hrp Genes of Pseudomonas solanacearum are Homologous to Pathogenicity Determinants of Animal Pathogenic Bacteria and are Conserved Among Plant Pathogenic Bacteria. C. L. Gough. Laboratoire de Biologie MolÚculaire des Relations Plantes Microorganismes, INRA-CNRS, 31326 Castanet-Tolosan, BP27, CÚdex, France. S. Genin, C. Zischek, and C. A. Boucher. Laboratoire de Biologie MolÚculaire des Relations Plantes Microorganismes, INRA-CNRS, 31326 Castanet-Tolosan, BP27, CÚdex, France.. MPMI 5:384-389. Accepted 6 July 1992. Copyright 1992 The American Phytopathological Society.


The majority of bacterial plant diseases are caused by members of three bacterial genera, Pseudomonas, Xanthomonas, and Erwinia. The identification and characterization of mutants that have lost the abilities to provoke disease symptoms on a compatible host and to induce a defensive hypersensitive reaction (HR) on an incompatible host have led to the discovery of clusters of hrp genes (hypersensitive reaction and pathogenicity) in phytopathogenic bacteria from each of these genera. Here, we report that predicted protein sequences of three hrp genes from Pseudomonas solanacearum show remarkable sequence similarity to key virulence determinants of animal pathogenic bacteria of the genus Yersinia. We also demonstrate DNA homologies between P. solanacearum hrp genes and hrp gene clusters of P. syringae pv. phaseolicola, Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris, and Erwinia amylovora. By comparing the role of the Yersinia determinants in the control of the extracellular production of proteins required for pathogenicity, we propose that hrp genes code for an export system that might be conserved among many diverse bacterial pathogens of plants and animals but that is distinct from the general export pathway.