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Expression of the Arabidopsis MCM Gene PROLIFERA During Root-Knot and Cyst Nematode Infection

January 2003 , Volume 93 , Number  1
Pages  35 - 41

X. Huang , P. S. Springer , and I. Kaloshian

First and third authors: Department of Nematology, University of California, Riverside 92521; and second author: Department of Botany and Plant Sciences, Center for Plant Cell Biology, University of California, Riverside 92521

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Accepted for publication 21 August 2002.

Expression of the Arabidopsis thaliana gene PROLIFERA (PRL) was examined during development of root-knot and cyst nematode feeding sites. These obligate plant parasites establish specialized feeding structures in roots that allow them to withdraw nutrients from the host. In the process of establishing feeding sites, nematodes alter cell cycle regulation. PRL is normally expressed specifically in dividing cells at all stages of plant development and was used here as a marker for cell division. PRL expression, reported from a PRL∷GUS fusion protein, was detected in nematode feeding sites of both root-knot and cyst nematodes from the earliest stages of infection in both giant cells and syncytia. However, unlike other cell cycle genes, expression of PRL was detected only occasionally in cells surrounding the feeding sites. PRL∷GUS activity persisted until late in the infection cycle, past the time when other cell cycle genes are expressed. These data indicate that some aspects of the PRL expression pattern during nematode infection differ from that of other cell cycle genes.

© 2003 The American Phytopathological Society