Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

How an aggressive fungal pathogen causes mold in fruits and vegetables

04.10.2013
UC Riverside-led team describes the strategy by which Botrytis cinerea blocks the defense system of its host plants

A research team led by a molecular plant pathologist at the University of California, Riverside has discovered the mechanism by which an aggressive fungal pathogen infects almost all fruits and vegetables.

The team discovered a novel "virulence mechanism" — the mechanism by which infection takes place — of Botrytis cinerea. This pathogen can infect more than 200 plant species, causing serious gray mold disease on almost all fruits and vegetables that have been around, even at times in the refrigerator, for more than a week.

Study results appear in the Oct. 4 issue of the journal Science.

Many bacterial, fungal and oomycete pathogens deliver protein effectors — molecules the pathogens secrete — into the cells of hosts to manipulate and, eventually, compromise host immunity.

The new study represents the first example of a fungal pathogen delivering RNA effectors, specifically small RNA effector molecules, into host cells to suppress host immunity and achieve infection of the host plant.

"To date, almost all the pathogen effectors studied or discovered have been proteins," said lead author Hailing Jin, a professor of plant pathology and microbiology. "Ours is the first study to add the RNA molecule to the list of effectors. We expect our work will help in the development of new means to control aggressive pathogens."

Small RNAs guide gene silencing in a wide range of eukaryotic organisms. In the case of Botrytis cinerea, small RNAs silence the expression of host defense genes, resulting in the host plant cells being less able to resist the fungal attack. The process is similar to how protein effectors weaken host immunity in the case of most pathogens.

"What we have discovered is a naturally-occurring cross-kingdom RNAi phenomenon between a fungal pathogen and a plant host that serves as an advanced virulence mechanism," Jin said.

RNA interference or RNAi is a conserved gene regulatory mechanism that is guided by small RNAs for silencing (or suppressing) genes.

Next, Jin and colleagues plan to continue investigating if the novel mechanism they discovered also exists in other aggressive pathogens.

Jin was joined in the research by UC Riverside's Arne Weiberg, Ming Wang, Hongwei Zhao, Zhihong Zhang and Isgouhi Kaloshian; and Feng-Mao Lin and Hsien-Da Huang at the National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan.

Jin was supported in this research by grants from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.

UCR's Office of Technology Commercialization has filed a provisional patent on the research.

The University of California, Riverside (http://www.ucr.edu) is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus will open a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion. A broadcast studio with fiber cable to the AT&T Hollywood hub is available for live or taped interviews. UCR also has ISDN for radio interviews. To learn more, call (951) UCR-NEWS.

Iqbal Pittalwala | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ucr.edu

Further reports about: Botrytis cinerea RNA RNAi fruits and vegetables fungal pathogen plant cell small RNA

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product
02.12.2016 | Purdue University

nachricht New findings about the deformed wing virus, a major factor in honey bee colony mortality
11.11.2016 | Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A big nano boost for solar cells

18.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Glass's off-kilter harmonies

18.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Toward a 'smart' patch that automatically delivers insulin when needed

18.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>