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Plant Mol Biol. 2000 Nov;44(5):675-85.

A Catharanthus roseus BPF-1 homologue interacts with an elicitor-responsive region of the secondary metabolite biosynthetic gene Str and is induced by elicitor via a JA-independent signal transduction pathway.

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Institute of Molecular Plant Sciences, Clusius Laboratory, Leiden University, Netherlands.


Plants respond to pathogen attack by induction of various defence responses, including the biosynthesis of protective secondary metabolites. In Catharanthus roseus, the elicitor-induced expression of the terpenoid indole alkaloid biosynthetic gene Strictosidine synthase (Str) is mediated via the plant stress hormonejasmonate. In the promoters of several defence-related genes, cis-acting elements have been identified that are important for transcriptional regulation upon stress signals. Here we show that an upstream region in the Str promoter confers responsiveness to partially purified yeast elicitor and jasmonate. Yeast one-hybrid screening with this element as a bait identified a MYB-like protein, which shows high homology to parsley box P-binding factor-1 (PcBPF-1). In vitro analyses showed that the Str promoter fragment contained a novel binding site for BPF-1-like proteins with higher binding affinity than the previously described box P. CrBPF-1 mRNA accumulated rapidly in elicitor-treated C. roseus suspension cells, whereas no induction was observed with jasmonate. Inhibitor studies indicated that CrBPF-1 plays a role in an elicitor-responsive but jasmonate-independent signal transduction pathway, acting downstream of protein phosphorylation and calcium influx.

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