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Plant Cell Rep. 2013 Jul;32(7):1139-49. doi: 10.1007/s00299-012-1381-2. Epub 2013 Jan 8.

Arabidopsis brassinosteroid-overproducing gulliver3-D/dwarf4-D mutants exhibit altered responses to jasmonic acid and pathogen.

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  • 1School of Biological Sciences, College of Natural Sciences, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-747, Korea.


KEY MESSAGE : Arabidopsis gulliver3 - D/dwarf4 - D displays growth-promoting phenotypes due to activation tagging of a key brassinosteroid biosynthetic gene DWARF4. In gul3-D/dwf4-D , the Jasmonate and Salicylate signaling pathways were relatively activated and suppressed, respectively. Energy allocation between growth and defense is elegantly balanced to achieve optimal development in plants. Brassinosteroids (BRs), steroidal hormones essential for plant growth, are regulated by other plant hormones, including auxin and jasmonates (JA); auxin stimulates the expression of a key brassinosteroid (BR) biosynthetic gene, DWARF4 (DWF4), whereas JA represses it. To better understand the interaction mechanisms between growth and defense, we isolated a fast-growing mutant, gulliver3-D (gul3-D), that resulted from the activation tagging of DWF4, and examined the response of this mutant to defense signals, including JA, Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato (Pst DC3000) infection, and wounding. The degree of root growth inhibition following MeJA treatment was significantly decreased in gul3-1D/dwf4-5D relative to the wild type, suggesting that JA signaling is partially desensitized in gul3-1D. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis of the genes involved in JA and salicylic acid (SA) responses, including MYC2, PDF1.2, CORI3, PR1, and PR2, revealed that JA signaling was preferentially activated in gul3-1D, whereas SA signaling was suppressed. As a result, gul3-1D was more susceptible to a biotrophic pathogen, Pst DC3000. Based on our results, we propose a model in which BR and JA cooperate to balance energy allocation between growth and defense responses. In ambient conditions, BRs promote plant growth; however, when stresses trigger JA signaling, JA compromises BR signaling by downregulating DWF4 expression.

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