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Transcriptional regulation of plant innate immunity

Niels Aerts, Himanshu Chhillar, ,
Published: 21 June 2022

Abstract: Transcriptional reprogramming is an integral part of plant immunity. Tight regulation of the immune transcriptome is essential for a proper response of plants to different types of pathogens. Consequently, transcriptional regulators are proven targets of pathogens to enhance their virulence. The plant immune transcriptome is regulated by many different, interconnected mechanisms that can determine the rate at which genes are transcribed. These include intracellular calcium signaling, modulation of the redox state, post-translational modifications of transcriptional regulators, histone modifications, DNA methylation, modulation of RNA polymerases, alternative transcription inititation, the Mediator complex and regulation by non-coding RNAs. In addition, on their journey from transcription to translation, mRNAs are further modulated through mechanisms such as nuclear RNA retention, storage of mRNA in stress granules and P-bodies, and post-transcriptional gene silencing. In this review, we highlight the latest insights into these mechanisms. Furthermore, we discuss some emerging technologies that promise to greatly enhance our understanding of the regulation of the plant immune transcriptome in the future.
Keywords: gene expression and regulation / plant immunity / RNA / transcription factors

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