Xanthomonas perforans colonization influences Salmonella enterica in the tomato phyllosphere

Neha Potnis, José Pablo Soto-Arias, Kimberly N. Cowles, Ariena H.C. van Bruggen, Jeffrey B. Jones, Jeri D. Barak

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39 Scopus citations


Salmonella enterica rarely grows on healthy, undamaged plants, but its persistence is influenced by bacterial plant pathogens. The interactions between S. enterica, Xanthomonas perforans (a tomato bacterial spot pathogen), and tomato were characterized. We observed that virulent X. perforans, which establishes disease by suppressing pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP)-triggered immunity that leads to effector-triggered susceptibility, created a conducive environment for persistence of S. enterica in the tomato phyllosphere, while activation of effector-triggered immunity by avirulent X. perforans resulted in a dramatic reduction in S. enterica populations. S. enterica populations persisted at ̃10 times higher levels in leaves coinoculated with virulent X. perforans than in those where S. enterica was applied alone. In contrast, S. enterica populations were ~5 times smaller in leaves coinoculated with avirulent X. perforans than in leaves inoculated with S. enterica alone. Coinoculation with virulent X. perforans increased S. enterica aggregate formation; however, S. enterica was not found in mixed aggregates with X. perforans. Increased aggregate formation by S. enterica may serve as the mechanism of persistence on leaves cocolonized by virulent X. perforans. S. enterica association with stomata was altered by X. perforans; however, it did not result in appreciable populations of S. enterica in the apoplast even in the presence of large virulent X. perforans populations. Gene-for-gene resistance against X. perforans successively restricted S. enterica populations. Given the effect of this interaction, breeding for disease- resistant cultivars may be an effective strategy to limit both plant disease and S. enterica populations and, consequently, human illness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3173-3180
Number of pages8
JournalApplied and environmental microbiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes


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