A recent study by Hai-Lei Wei’s research team at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences has revealed new insights into plant biosynthesis and modulation of immunity. The study focuses on a new cyclic lipopeptide called medpeptin, produced by Pseudomonas mediterranea.
Cyclic lipopeptides (CLPs) are multifunctional secondary metabolites produced by several bacteria and have been identified as key triggers of plant immunity. However, the mechanisms underlying the interactions between CLPs and plants have been difficult to describe. The study focuses on medpeptin, a 22-amino acid CLP that is synthesized by a nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) gene cluster and regulated by a bacterial concentration-sensing system.
Unlike other CLPs, medpeptin does not show antimicrobial activity. Instead, it induces immunity to plant cell death and confers resistance to bacterial infection. Through comparative transcriptome analysis and virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS), the research team identified specific immune signaling candidates involved in medpeptin perception in Nicotiana benthamiana, a model plant species .
Study highlights the critical role of a cell wall leucine-rich repeat protein (NbLRX3) and a receptor-like protein kinase (NbRLK25) in mediating medpeptin-induced cell death and resistance to infection by pathogens. Deletion of these proteins compromised the immune response, emphasizing their importance in medpeptin-induced defense mechanisms.
This research provides valuable insights into the non-canonical mechanisms of CLP sensing and its impact on plant immunity. The identification of medpeptin and its unique mode of action opens new possibilities for developing innovative biotechnological applications aimed at improving protection against plant diseases and increasing crop productivity.
Understanding the complex interactions between CLPs and plants offers new possibilities for developing effective strategies to increase plant resistance to diseases. These discoveries have significant implications for agriculture and may lead to the development of sustainable and environmentally friendly disease control methods. Harnessing the power of medpeptin and other CLPs could revolutionize plant protection strategies, reducing dependence on traditional chemical pesticides and promoting healthier, more resistant crops.
Source: Engineering Post
– Cyclic lipopeptides (CLP): are multifunctional secondary metabolites produced by bacteria that play a key role in plant immunity.
– Non-ribosomal peptide (NRPS): system of non-ribosomal enzymes that synthesize peptides in microorganisms.
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