Phytopathology Research

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EISSN : 2524-4167
Total articles ≅ 83
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Ziyue Ma, Hui Zhang, Ming Ding, Zhongkai Zhang, , Xueping Zhou
Published: 5 July 2021
by 10.1186
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-10; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00091-0

Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (ToBRFV) is a new member of the genus Tobamovirus, and has the potential to affect the production and marketability of tomatoes and peppers. In this study, we sequenced and analyzed the complete genome of ToBRFV isolates from tomato plants showing mosaic and mottling symptoms in Yunnan Province of China. We constructed a full-length infectious cDNA clone of ToBRFV, which could induce systemic infection with typical symptoms in tomato, Nicotiana benthamiana, and N. tabacum cv. Samsun nn plants through Agrobacterium-mediated inoculation. Further experimental evidence demonstrated that the rod-shaped virions accumulating in agroinfiltrated plants are sap-transmissible. This is the first report on the construction of a biologically active, full-length infectious cDNA clone of ToBRFV. The system developed herein will facilitate further research on functions of ToBRFV-encoded proteins and plant-ToBRFV interactions through reverse genetic approaches.
Chen Ye, Yixiang Liu, Junxing Zhang, Tianyao Li, Yijie Zhang, Cunwu Guo, Min Yang, Xiahong He, Youyong Zhu, HuiChuan Huang, et al.
Published: 29 June 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-17; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00090-1

The accumulation of soil-borne pathogens is the main driving factor of negative plant-soil feedbacks (NPSFs), which seriously restricts the sustainable development of agriculture. Using natural volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from plants or microorganisms as biofumigants is an emerging strategy to alleviate NPSFs in an environmentally-friendly way. Here, we identified α-terpineol from the VOCs of pine needles, confirmed the ability of α-terpineol fumigation in alleviating the NPSF of Panax notoginseng via significantly reducing seed decay rate, and also deciphered the underlying mechanism by which the soil microbial community is modified. α-Terpineol fumigation could suppress culturable fungi but enrich bacteria in a dose-dependent manner. Network analysis with high-throughput sequencing data revealed that α-terpineol could distinctly modify both fungal and bacterial communities. In detail, α-terpineol significantly suppressed the relative abundance of Ascomycota from 64.04 to 32.26%, but enriched the relative abundance of Proteobacteria, Acidobacteria and Actinobacteria. Subnetwork analysis further demonstrated that α-terpineol could directly or indirectly suppress fungal pathogens and enrich plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs). In vitro fumigation and co-culture experiments with culturable isolates validated these findings. The antagonism between beneficial bacteria and pathogens, and the synergistic growth promotion among α-terpineol-enriched bacteria might be involved in soil microbial community assembly. In summary, α-terpineol fumigation could directly or indirectly modify the soil microbial community to alleviate NPSFs, especially by suppressing fungal pathogens and enriching beneficial bacteria. This study suggests that VOCs from natural products are worth developing as biofumigants due to their multiple functions in modifying the soil microbial community.
Xinyu Lu, Heng Xu, Wen Song, Zitong Yang, Jia Yu, Yuee Tian, Min Jiang, , Daolong Dou
Published: 10 June 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-8; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00089-8

Phytophthora cactorum is a devastating pathogen that infects a wide range of plants and causes Phytophthora rot disease, which has resulted in great economic losses in crop production. Therefore, the rapid and practicable detection of P. cactorum is important for disease monitoring and forecasting. In this study, we developed a lateral flow recombinase polymerase amplification (LF-RPA) assay for the sensitive visual detection of P. cactorum. Specific primers for P. cactorum were designed based on the ras-related protein gene Ypt1; all 10 P. cactorum isolates yielded positive detection results, whereas no cross-reaction occurred in related oomycete or fungal species. The detection limit for the LF-RPA assay was 100 fg of genomic DNA under optimized conditions. Combined with a simplified alkaline lysis method for plant DNA extraction, the LF-RPA assay successfully detected P. cactorum in naturally diseased strawberry samples without specialized equipment within 40 min. Thus, the LF-RPA assay developed in this study is a rapid, simple, and accurate method for the detection of P. cactorum, with the potential for further application in resource-limited laboratories.
Qingtong Ye, Jingyi Jia, Ishara S. Manawasinghe, Xinghong Li, Wei Zhang, Laura Mugnai, Xuehong Wu, Kevin D. Hyde, Jiye Yan
Published: 25 May 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-17; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00087-w

The Esca disease complex includes some of the most important trunk diseases of grapevines (Vitis spp.) and causes serious yield losses in grape production worldwide. However, there has been no detailed study on its presence and associated pathogens in China. During 2017–2019, a preliminary field survey was conducted in eight vineyards in Hebei and Ningxia provinces, China when unusual foliar symptoms were observed. Symptoms were distinct tiger striped leaves, which are typical of grapevine leaf stripe disease (GLSD), one of the most common diseases in the Esca complex. Tiger-stripe leaf symptoms were found in four vineyards, and incidence was cultivar dependent varying with vineyard and year. A total of 266 fungal isolates were obtained from wood tissues of grapevines with typical foliar symptoms of GLSD. Based on morphological characters and multigene-combined phylogenetic analyses, the Ascomycete Phaeoacremonium minimum, one of the pathogens associated with Esca complex was identified. The basidiomycete Fomitiporia punicata, which has never been reported infecting grapevine, was also identified and found to be associated with wood rot in grapevine. The remaining isolates included some known wood pathogens, such as Neofusicoccum species and Diaporthe species. Koch’s postulates were performed in the greenhouse, confirming that both F. punicata and P. minimum caused leaf interveinal chlorosis and necrosis that resembled the GLSD symptoms of the Esca complex observed in the field. The present study provides the first detailed report of the Esca complex in China. In addition, this is the first record of F. punicata associated with Esca complex of grapevine worldwide. The results of this study provide new insights into the knowledge of the Esca complex.
Zhi-Yong Yan, Xiao-Jie Xu, Le Fang, Chao Geng, Yan-Ping Tian,
Published: 21 May 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-13; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00088-9

Coat protein (CP) is required for potyviruses to move and establish a systemic infection in plants. π-stackings formed by aromatic residues play critical roles in maintaining protein stability and functions. As we know, many aromatic residues located in the core region of potyvirus CPs are conserved. However, their roles in potyvirus infection remain largely unknown. Here, through analysis of the three-dimensional model of the tobacco vein banding mosaic virus (TVBMV; genus Potyvirus) CP, 16 aromatic residues were predicated to form π-stackings. The results of transient expression experiments demonstrated that deletion of any of these 16 aromatic residues reduced CP accumulation. Infectivity assays showed that deletion of any of these aromatic residues in the TVBMV infectious clone abolished cell-to-cell movement and reduced replication of the virus. Substitution of Y105 and Y147 individually with non-aromatic residues alanine or glycine reduced CP accumulation, virus replication, and abolished the ability of TVBMV to move intercellularly, while substitution of these two residues individually with aromatic residues phenylalanine or tryptophan, had no or little effect on CP accumulation and TVBMV systemic movement and replication. Similar results were obtained from the CP mutants of watermelon mosaic virus (WMV, genus Potyvirus). Taken together, our results demonstrate that multiple aromatic residues in CP are involved in potyvirus movement by forming π-stackings to maintain CP accumulation.
Kang Zhang, Zaixu Zhao, Ziding Zhang, Yuejiao Li, Shaojie Li, Nan Yao, Tom Hsiang,
Published: 28 April 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-15; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00086-x

Ustilaginoidea virens, the causal agent of rice false smut, is an economically important filamentous fungal pathogen. A high-quality reference genome of U. virens promotes understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying its virulence and pathogenicity. Here, we report the first chromosome-level assembly of U. virens genome consisting of seven chromosomes ranging from 2.4 to 7.5 Mb. The assembly has dramatic improvements over previous assemblies, including considerably longer contigs, higher proportion of repetitive elements and more functionally annotated genes. Phylogenetic analyses revealed an extremely low intraspecific sequence divergence in U. virens. By contrast, intraspecific genome comparisons uncovered dynamic genomic alterations including massive structural variations and widespread lineage-specific regions (LSRs) among U. virens strains, which were mainly generated by recent burst of retrotransposons. Genomic plasticity created by structural variations and LSRs might drive rapid evolution of U. virens. High-quality mitochondrial genomes of eight U. virens strains exhibit size variations from 94 to 102 kb. Consistently, U. virens contains conserved lengths of exons and highly dynamic mobile introns, which contribute to intraspecific size variations due to gain/loss of homing endonuclease genes. This study highlights unique characteristics in nuclear and mitochondrial genomic divergence and provides new insights into genomic and mitochondrial evolution of U. virens.
Yaqin Wang, Xinyue Zhang, Tao Hu,
Published: 2 April 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-6; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00085-y

Malvastrum coromandelianum is a common weed plant frequently found around agricultural fields. Three virus isolates (Y249, Y278 and Y281) were obtained from M. coromandelianum with yellow vein symptoms in Honghe and Baoshan, Yunnan Province, China. Specific 500 bp products were amplified from total DNA extracts using universal primers for members of the genus Begomovirus. The complete viral genome sequences of both Y278 and Y281 were determined to be 2743 nucleotides, and that of Y249 was determined to be 2740 nucleotides. Sequence alignments and phylogenetic analyses support the proposal of creating new species in the genus Begomovirus, for which the name malvastrum yellow vein Baoshan virus (MaYVBsV) is proposed for Y278 and Y281, and malvastrum yellow vein Honghe virus (MaYVHhV) is proposed for Y249.
Xue Li, Cong Jin, Hongbo Yuan, Wanting Huang, Fang Liu, Renchun Fan, Jiankun Xie,
Published: 20 March 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-14; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00084-z

The powdery mildew fungi secrete numerous Candidate Secreted Effector Proteins (CSEPs) to manipulate host immunity during infection of host plants. However, the function of most of these CSEPs in cell death suppression has not yet been established. Here, we identified several CSEPs from Blumeria graminis f. sp. hordei (Bgh) that have the potential to suppress BAX- and NtMEK2DD-triggered cell death in Nicotiana benthamiana. We further characterized two effector candidates, CSEP0139 and CSEP0182, from family six and thirty-two, respectively. CSEP0139 and CSEP0182 contain a functional signal peptide and are likely secreted effectors. Expression of either CSEP0139 or CSEP0182 suppressed cell death triggered by BAX and NtMEK2DD but not by the AVRa13/MLA13 pair in N. benthamiana. Transient overexpression of CSEP0139 or CSEP0182 also inhibited BAX-induced cell death and collapse of cytoplasm in barley cells. Furthermore, overexpression of either CSEPs significantly increased Bgh haustorial formation in barley, whereas host-induced gene silencing (HIGS) of the CSEP genes reduced haustorial formation, suggesting both CSEPs promote Bgh virulence in barley. In addition, expression of CSEP0139 and CSEP0182 reduced size of the lesions caused by the necrotrophic Botrytis cinerea in N. benthamiana. Our findings suggest that CSEP0139 and CSEP0182 may target cell death components in plants to promote fungal virulence, which extends the current understanding of the functions of Bgh CSEPs and provides an opportunity for further investigation of fungal virulence in relation to cell death pathways in host plants.
Xuedong Liu, Xi Chen, Sijia Liu, Kaitong Du, Pei Wang, Tong Jiang, Mengji Cao, Xiangdong Li, Zaifeng Fan,
Published: 19 March 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-10; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00082-1

Pennisetum plants (Pennisetum alopecuroides L.), displaying a dwarfing phenotype along with delayed flowering and mosaic symptom on leaves, were found in Beijing, China. Flexuous filamentous particles with a size of approximate 15 × 850 nm were observed in symptomatic leaves via transmission electron microscopy. Deep sequencing of small RNAs (sRNA) from symptomatic leaves and analysis of sRNA populations were then conducted to determine the genome sequence of the viral agent in diseased plant tissues. It showed that the viral agent had one positive-sense and single-stranded RNA genome, which consisted of 9717 nucleotides (nts) excluding poly(A) tail. The complete viral genome contained a large open reading frame, encoding a polyprotein of 3131 amino acids (aa). Sequence comparison and phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that the viral agent belonged to the genus Potyvirus in the family Potyviridae. In the cladogram it was most closely related to johnsongrass mosaic virus, sharing 72% nt and 65% aa sequence identity. This viral agent was provisionally named pennisetum alopecuroides mosaic virus (PalMV). Subsequently, it was confirmed that PalMV is the causal agent of this new disease in P. alopecuroides by Koch’s postulates and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis. Moreover, maize, millet, wheat, sorghum and rice plants were experimentally infected by PalMV via rub inoculation. Consequently, we proposed that PalMV could be a potentially dangerous virus threating a wide range of cereal crops.
Hui-Juan Cao, Jin-Jin Zhang, Ming-Li Yong, Mi-Na Yu, Tian-Qiao Song, Jun-Jie Yu, Xia-Yan Pan, Yong-Feng Liu
Published: 15 March 2021
Phytopathology Research, Volume 3, pp 1-13; doi:10.1186/s42483-021-00083-0

Rice false smut caused byUstilaginoidea virensis one of the widespread rice diseases across the globe in recent years, however, we know little about its molecular mechanism of infection. The cAMP signaling pathway functions directly in the development and formation of infectious structures to regulate the infection process in many pathogenic fungi. In order to investigate the role of the cAMP signaling pathway inU. virens, UvCap1, a cyclase-associated-protein homologous toSaccharomyces cerevisiaeSrv2 was identified. Three targeted deletion mutants of theUvCAP1gene were obtained with gene replacement strategy assisted with CRISPR-Cas9 system. TheUvCAP1deletion mutants showed defects in mycelial growth and conidial production. Inoculation experiments demonstrated that ΔUvcap1exhibited defects in pathogenicity. Compared with the wild-type strain, ΔUvcap1showed decreased tolerance to sorbitol and H2O2, and increased tolerance to NaCl, CFW and SDS, and the intracellular cAMP level was significantly reduced in ΔUvcap1. Yeast two-hybrid assay identified the interactions of UvCap1 with UvAc1 (adenylase cyclase), two Ras proteins (UvRas1 and UvRas2) and UvSte50. Taken together, as a component of cAMP signaling pathway, UvCap1 plays important roles in the development and pathogenicity ofU. virens.
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