Sci. STKE, 3 August 2004
JASMONATE SIGNALING Removing Plant Defenses
In order to resist herbivore attack, plants use direct defenses, such as toxins and digestibility reducers, as well as indirect defenses that affect components of the plants' community (such as natural enemies and diseases). Plant defenses can be expressed constitutively or produced in response to an attacking pathogen or herbivore. Kessler et al. (see the Perspective by Dicke et al.) transformed the wild tobacco species Nicotiana attenuata, to silence three genes coding for enzymes in the jasmonate signaling pathway, which is known to be involved in induced plant defense. When planted in native habitats, the transformed plants were more vulnerable not only to their specialist herbivores but also to other herbivore species.
Citation: Removing Plant Defenses. Sci. STKE 2004, tw281 (2004).
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