Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Bacteriol. 2009 Jan;191(1):355-64. doi: 10.1128/JB.01018-08. Epub 2008 Oct 24.

The Agrobacterium rhizogenes GALLS gene encodes two secreted proteins required for genetic transformation of plants.

Author information

  • 1Department of Microbiology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA.


Agrobacterium tumefaciens and Agrobacterium rhizogenes are related pathogens that cause crown gall and hairy root diseases, which result from integration and expression of bacterial genes in the plant genome. Single-stranded DNA (T strands) and virulence proteins are translocated into plant cells by a type IV secretion system. VirD2 nicks a specific DNA sequence, attaches to the 5' end, and pilots the DNA into plant cells. A. tumefaciens translocates single-stranded DNA-binding protein VirE2 into plant cells where it likely binds T strands and may aid in targeting them into the nucleus. Although some A. rhizogenes strains lack VirE2, they transfer T strands efficiently due to the GALLS gene, which complements an A. tumefaciens virE2 mutant for tumor formation. Unlike VirE2, full-length GALLS (GALLS-FL) contains ATP-binding and helicase motifs similar to those in TraA, a strand transferase involved in conjugation. GALLS-FL and VirE2 contain nuclear localization signals (NLS) and secretion signals. Mutations in any of these domains abolish the ability of the GALLS gene to substitute for virE2. Here, we show that the GALLS gene encodes two proteins from one open reading frame: GALLS-FL and a protein comprised of the C-terminal domain, which initiates at an internal in-frame start codon. On some hosts, both GALLS proteins were required to substitute for VirE2. GALLS-FL tagged with yellow fluorescent protein localized to the nucleus of tobacco cells in an NLS-dependent manner. In plant cells, the GALLS proteins interacted with themselves, VirD2, and each other. VirD2 interacted with GALLS-FL and localized inside the nucleus, where its predicted helicase activity may pull T strands into the nucleus.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk