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PLoS One. 2011;6(12):e28466. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0028466. Epub 2011 Dec 12.

Metabolic and miRNA profiling of TMV infected plants reveals biphasic temporal changes.

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  • 1Instituto de Biotecnología, CICVyA-INTA, Hurlingham, Buenos Aires, Argentina.


Plant viral infections induce changes including gene expression and metabolic components. Identification of metabolites and microRNAs (miRNAs) differing in abundance along infection may provide a broad view of the pathways involved in signaling and defense that orchestrate and execute the response in plant-pathogen interactions. We used a systemic approach by applying both liquid and gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry to determine the relative level of metabolites across the viral infection, together with a miRs profiling using a micro-array based procedure. Systemic changes in metabolites were characterized by a biphasic response after infection. The first phase, detected at one dpi, evidenced the action of a systemic signal since no virus was detected systemically. Several of the metabolites increased at this stage were hormone-related. miRs profiling after infection also revealed a biphasic alteration, showing miRs alteration at 5 dpi where no virus was detected systemically and a late phase correlating with virus accumulation. Correlation analyses revealed a massive increase in the density of correlation networks after infection indicating a complex reprogramming of the regulatory pathways, either in response to the plant defense mechanism or to the virus infection itself. Our data propose the involvement of a systemic signaling on early miRs alteration.

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