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Structural and Physical Properties of a Necrosis-Inducing Toxin from Pyrenophora tritici-repentis

February 1997 , Volume 87 , Number  2
Pages  154 - 160

Hui-Fen Zhang , Leonard J. Francl , James G. Jordahl , and Steven W. Meinhardt

First and fourth authors:Department of Biochemistry, 166 Loftsgard Hall; and second and third authors: Department of Plant Pathology, Walster Hall, North Dakota State University, Fargo 58105

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Accepted for publication 5 November 1996.

Cultivar-specific toxic metabolites of Pyrenophora tritici-repentis are involved in the appearance of necrotic and chlorotic foliar lesions characteristic of tan spot. A P. tritici-repentis necrosis-inducing toxin, Ptr necrosis toxin, was purified from isolate 86-124, sequenced by gas-phase amino acid microsequencing, and characterized by circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy and isoelectric focusing. The purified protein had a similar amino acid composition and molecular weight as previously reported. Analysis of the CD spectrum from 178 to 250 nm indicated a protein consisting of 13% α-helix, 36% antiparallel β-sheet, 25% turns, and 25% other structures. The Ptr necrosis toxin from isolate 86-124 has an isoelectric point near pH 10. Using overlapping proteolytic fragments obtained from the toxin, a sequence of 101 continuous amino acids was obtained, but the amino terminus was blocked and 9 to 16 amino acids could not be sequenced. Secondary structure prediction based on the amino acid sequence indicated a β-sheet protein with little α-helix, which is in agreement with the structure determined by CD spectroscopy. Sequence analysis indicated the presence of a possible membrane adhesion site and several possible phosphorylation sites that may be involved in phytotoxicity.

Additional keywords: protein isolation, Triticum aestivum, wheat.

© 1997 The American Phytopathological Society