The fusarium graminearum t-snare sso2 is involved in growth, defense, and don accumulation and virulence

Sean P. O'Mara, Karen Broz, Marike Boenisch, Zixuan Zhong, Yanhong Dong, H. Corby Kistler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The plant-pathogenic fungus Fusarium graminearum, causal agent of Fusarium head blight (FHB) disease on small grain cereals, produces toxic trichothecenes that require facilitated export for full virulence. Two potential modes of mycotoxin transport are membrane-bound transporters, which move toxins across cellular membranes, and N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment receptor (SNARE)-mediated vesicular transport, by which toxins may be packaged as cargo in vesicles bound for organelles or the plasma membrane. In this study, we show that deletion of a gene ( Sso2) for a subapically localized t-SNARE protein results in growth alteration, increased sensitivity to xenobiotics, altered gene expression profiles, and reduced deoxynivalenol (DON) accumulation in vitro and in planta as well as reduced FHB symptoms on wheat. A double deletion mutant generated by crossing the ∆sso2 deletion mutant with an ATP-binding cassette transporter deletion mutant ( ∆abc1) resulted in an additive reduction in DON accumulation and almost complete loss of FHB symptoms in planta. These results suggest an important role of Sso2-mediated subapical exocytosis in FHB progression and xenobiotic defense and are the first report of an additive reduction in F. graminearum DON accumulation upon deletion of two distinct modes of cellular export. This research provides useful information which may aid in formulating novel management plans of FHB or other destructive plant diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)888-901
Number of pages14
JournalMolecular Plant-Microbe Interactions
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 American Phytopathological Society. All rights reserved.


  • Fungus-plant interactions
  • Fusarium head blight
  • Mycotoxin
  • Phytotoxin
  • Secretion
  • Transporters
  • Plant Diseases/microbiology
  • Triticum/microbiology
  • Virulence
  • Trichothecenes/metabolism
  • Fusarium/genetics
  • SNARE Proteins/genetics
  • Gene Deletion
  • Genes, Fungal

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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