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EMBO J. 2001 Jul 2;20(13):3596-607.

VIP1, an Arabidopsis protein that interacts with Agrobacterium VirE2, is involved in VirE2 nuclear import and Agrobacterium infectivity.

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Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY 11794-5215, USA.


T-DNA nuclear import is a central event in genetic transformation of plant cells by Agrobacterium. This event is thought to be mediated by two bacterial proteins, VirD2 and VirE2, which are associated with the transported T-DNA molecule. While VirD2 is imported into the nuclei of plant, animal and yeast cells, nuclear uptake of VirE2 occurs most efficiently in plant cells. To understand better the mechanism of VirE2 action, a cellular interactor of VirE2 was identified and its encoding gene cloned from Arabidopsis. The identified plant protein, designated VIP1, specifically bound VirE2 and allowed its nuclear import in non-plant systems. In plants, VIP1 was required for VirE2 nuclear import and Agrobacterium tumorigenicity, participating in early stages of T-DNA expression.

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