Plant biology

Elucidating a Plant Defense Mechanism

Science's STKE  26 Apr 2005:
Vol. 2005, Issue 281, pp. tw159
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2812005tw159

Arabidopsis strains carrying the gene encoding RPS2 are resistant to infection by the bacterium Pseudomonas syringae, which introduces the protease effector AvrRpt2 into plant cells during pathogenesis. Coaker et al. (see the Perspective by Schulze-Lefert and Bieri) now show that the plant's own cyclophilin activates the proteolytic activity of the bacterial effector, AvrRpt2. AvrRpt2 then destroys the intermediate target protein (RIN4) in the plant, activating the plant's defensive response. It is possible that such folding of bacterial effector proteases by eukaryotic protein factors may be a common mechanism during pathogenesis.

G. Coaker, A. Falick, B. Staskawicz, Activation of a phytopathogenic bacterial effector protein by a eukaryotic cyclophilin. Science 308, 548-550 (2005). [Abstract] [Full Text]

P. Schulze-Lefert, S. Bieri, Recognition at a distance. Science 308, 506-508 (2005). [Summary] [Full Text]