To discover which components of plant defense responses make significant contributions to limiting pathogen attack, we screened a mutagenized population of Arabidopsis thaliana for individuals that exhibit increased susceptibility to the moderately virulent bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. maculicola ES4326 (Psm ES4326). The 12 enhanced disease susceptibility (eds) mutants isolated included alleles of two genes involved in phytoalexin biosynthesis (pad2, which had been identified previously, and pad4, which had not been identified previously), two alleles of the previously identified npr1 gene, which affects expression of other defense genes, and alleles of seven previously unidentified genes of unknown function. The npr1 mutations caused greatly reduced expression of the PR1 gene in response to PsmES4326 infection, but had little effect on expression of two other defense genes, BGL2 and PR5, suggesting that PR1 expression may be important for limiting growth of PsmES4326. While direct screens for mutants with quantitative pathogen-susceptibility phenotypes have not been reported previously, our finding that mutants isolated in this way include those affected in known defense responses supports the notion that this type of screening strategy allows genetic dissection of the roles of various plant defense responses in disease resistance.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||10|
|State||Published - Jun 1 1996|