A new high-throughput screening technique developed by researchers at the RIKEN Plant Science Center (PSC) has been used to uncover five novel immune-priming compounds in Arabidopsis plants.
Discovery of the compounds, which enhance disease resistance without impacting plant growth or crop yield, establishes the new technique as a powerful asset in the battle to protect crops from damaging pathogens.
Plant activators, compounds that activate a plant's immune system in response to invasion by pathogens, play a crucial role in crop survival by triggering a range of immune responses. Unlike pesticides, plant activators are not pathogen specific and also not affected by drug resistance, making them ideal for use in agriculture. Wet-rice farmers across East Asia use plant activators as a sustainable means to enhance crop durability without the environmental consequences of microbial pesticides.
Yoshiteru Noutoshi, Masateru Okazaki, Tatsuya Kida, Yuta Nishina, Yoshihiko Morishita, Takumi Ogawa, Hideyuki Suzuki, Daisuke Shibata, Yusuke Jikumaru, Atsushi Hanada, Yuji Kamiya, and Ken Shirasu. Novel Plant Immune-Priming Compounds Identified via High-Throughput Chemical Screening Target Salicylic Acid Glucosyltransferases in Arabidopsis. The Plant Cell, 2012. DOI: doi/10.1105/tpc.112.098343
The RIKEN Plant Science Center (PSC), located at the RIKEN Yokohama Research Institute in Yokohama City, Japan, is at the forefront of research efforts to uncover mechanisms underlying plant metabolism, morphology and development, and apply these findings to improving plant production. With laboratories ranging in subject area from metabolomics, to functional genomics, to plant regulation and productivity, to plant evolution and adaptation, the PSC's broad scope grants it a unique position in the network of modern plant science research. In cooperation with universities, research institutes and industry, the PSC is working to ensure a stable supply of food, materials, and energy to support a growing world population and its pressing health and environmental needs.
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