The CALMODULIN-BINDING PROTEIN60 family includes both negative and positive regulators of plant immunity

William Truman, Suma Sreekanta, You Lu, Gerit Bethke, Kenichi Tsuda, Fumiaki Katagiri, Jane Glazebrook

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


Two members of the eight-member CALMODULIN-BINDING PROTEIN60 (CBP60) gene family, CBP60g and SYSTEMIC ACQUIRED RESISTANCE DEFICIENT1 (SARD1), encode positive regulators of plant immunity that promote the production of salicylic acid (SA) and affect the expression of SA-dependent and SA-independent defense genes. Here, we investigated the other six family members in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). Only cbp60a mutations affected growth of the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv maculicola ES4326. In contrast to cbp60g and sard1 mutations, cbp60a mutations reduced pathogen growth, indicating that CBP60a is a negative regulator of immunity. Bacterial growth was increased by cbp60g only in the presence of CBP60a, while the increase in growth due to sard1 was independent of CBP60a, suggesting that the primary function of CBP60gmay be to counter the repressive effect of CBP60a. In the absence of pathogen, levels of SA as well as of several SA-dependent and SA-independent pathogen-inducible genes were higher in cbp60a plants than in the wild type, suggesting that the enhanced resistance of cbp60a plants may result from the activation of immune responses prior to pathogen attack. CBP60a bound calmodulin, and the calmodulin-binding domain was defined at the C-terminal end of the protein. Transgenes encoding mutant versions of CBP60a lacking the ability to bind calmodulin failed to complement null cbp60a mutations, indicating that calmodulin-binding ability is required for the immunity-repressing function of CBP60a. Regulation at the CBP60 node involves negative regulation by CBP60a as well as positive regulation by CBP60g and SARD1, providing multiple levels of control over the activation of immune responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1741-1751
Number of pages11
JournalPlant physiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2013


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