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The Arabidopsis leaf transcriptome reveals distinct but also overlapping responses to colonization by phyllosphere commensals and pathogen infection with impact on plant health


Vogel, Christine; Bodenhausen, Natacha; Gruissem, Wilhelm; Vorholt, Julia A (2016). The Arabidopsis leaf transcriptome reveals distinct but also overlapping responses to colonization by phyllosphere commensals and pathogen infection with impact on plant health. New Phytologist, 212(1):192-207.

Abstract

Plants are colonized by a variety of bacteria, most of which are not pathogenic. Currently, the plant responses to phyllosphere commensals or to pathogen infection in the presence of commensals are not well understood. Here, we examined the transcriptional response of Arabidopsis thaliana leaves to colonization by common commensal bacteria in a gnotobiotic system using RNA sequencing and conducted plant mutant assays. Arabidopsis responded differently to the model bacteria Sphingomonas melonis Fr1 (S.Fr1) and Methylobacterium extorquens PA1 (M.PA1). Whereas M.PA1 only marginally affected the expression of plant genes (< 10), S.Fr1 colonization changed the expression of almost 400 genes. For the latter, genes related to defense responses were activated and partly overlapped with those elicited by the pathogen Pseudomonas syringae DC3000 (Pst). As S.Fr1 is able to mediate plant protective activity against Pst, we tested plant immunity mutants and found that the pattern-recognition co-receptor mutant bak1/bkk1 showed attenuated S.Fr1-dependent plant protection. The experiments demonstrate that the plant responds differently to members of its natural phyllosphere microbiota. A subset of commensals trigger expression of defense-related genes and thereby may contribute to plant health upon pathogen encounter.

Abstract

Plants are colonized by a variety of bacteria, most of which are not pathogenic. Currently, the plant responses to phyllosphere commensals or to pathogen infection in the presence of commensals are not well understood. Here, we examined the transcriptional response of Arabidopsis thaliana leaves to colonization by common commensal bacteria in a gnotobiotic system using RNA sequencing and conducted plant mutant assays. Arabidopsis responded differently to the model bacteria Sphingomonas melonis Fr1 (S.Fr1) and Methylobacterium extorquens PA1 (M.PA1). Whereas M.PA1 only marginally affected the expression of plant genes (< 10), S.Fr1 colonization changed the expression of almost 400 genes. For the latter, genes related to defense responses were activated and partly overlapped with those elicited by the pathogen Pseudomonas syringae DC3000 (Pst). As S.Fr1 is able to mediate plant protective activity against Pst, we tested plant immunity mutants and found that the pattern-recognition co-receptor mutant bak1/bkk1 showed attenuated S.Fr1-dependent plant protection. The experiments demonstrate that the plant responds differently to members of its natural phyllosphere microbiota. A subset of commensals trigger expression of defense-related genes and thereby may contribute to plant health upon pathogen encounter.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Functional Genomics Center Zurich
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:October 2016
Deposited On:17 Jan 2017 13:14
Last Modified:21 Nov 2017 18:53
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0028-646X
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/nph.14036
PubMed ID:27306148

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