Richard S. Hussey,
Thomas J. Baum, and
Eric L. Davis
First, third, and seventh authors: North Carolina State University, Department of Plant Pathology, Raleigh 27607; second author: Longwood University, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences, Farmville, VA 23909; fourth and fifth authors: University of Georgia, Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases and Department of Plant Pathology, respectively, Athens 30602; and sixth author: Iowa State University, Department of Plant Pathology, Ames 50011.
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Accepted for publication 9 October 2012.
Parasitism genes encode effector proteins that are secreted through the stylet of root-knot nematodes to dramatically modify selected plant cells into giant-cells for feeding. The Mi8D05 parasitism gene previously identified was confirmed to encode a novel protein of 382 amino acids that had only one database homolog identified on contig 2374 within the Meloidogyne hapla genome. Mi8D05 expression peaked in M. incognita parasitic second-stage juveniles within host roots and its encoded protein was limited to the subventral esophageal gland cells that produce proteins secreted from the stylet. Constitutive expression of Mi8D05 in transformed Arabidopsis thaliana plants induced accelerated shoot growth and early flowering but had no visible effects on root growth. Independent lines of transgenic Arabidopsis that expressed a double-stranded RNA complementary to Mi8D05 in host-derived RNA interference (RNAi) tests had up to 90% reduction in infection by M. incognita compared with wild-type control plants, suggesting that Mi8D05 plays a critical role in parasitism by the root-knot nematode. Yeast two-hybrid experiments confirmed the specific interaction of the Mi8D05 protein with plant aquaporin tonoplast intrinsic protein 2 (TIP2) and provided evidence that the Mi8D05 effector may help regulate solute and water transport within giant-cells to promote the parasitic interaction.
© 2013 The American Phytopathological Society