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Plant J. 2004 Apr;38(2):285-97.

Molecular cloning of the potato Gro1-4 gene conferring resistance to pathotype Ro1 of the root cyst nematode Globodera rostochiensis, based on a candidate gene approach.

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MPI für Züchtungsforschung, Carl von Linné Weg 10, 50829 Köln, Germany.


The endoparasitic root cyst nematode Globodera rostochiensis causes considerable damage in potato cultivation. In the past, major genes for nematode resistance have been introgressed from related potato species into cultivars. Elucidating the molecular basis of resistance will contribute to the understanding of nematode-plant interactions and assist in breeding nematode-resistant cultivars. The Gro1 resistance locus to G. rostochiensis on potato chromosome VII co-localized with a resistance-gene-like (RGL) DNA marker. This marker was used to isolate from genomic libraries 15 members of a closely related candidate gene family. Analysis of inheritance, linkage mapping, and sequencing reduced the number of candidate genes to three. Complementation analysis by stable potato transformation showed that the gene Gro1-4 conferred resistance to G. rostochiensis pathotype Ro1. Gro1-4 encodes a protein of 1136 amino acids that contains Toll-interleukin 1 receptor (TIR), nucleotide-binding (NB), leucine-rich repeat (LRR) homology domains and a C-terminal domain with unknown function. The deduced Gro1-4 protein differed by 29 amino acid changes from susceptible members of the Gro1 gene family. Sequence characterization of 13 members of the Gro1 gene family revealed putative regulatory elements and a variable microsatellite in the promoter region, insertion of a retrotransposon-like element in the first intron, and a stop codon in the NB coding region of some genes. Sequence analysis of RT-PCR products showed that Gro1-4 is expressed, among other members of the family including putative pseudogenes, in non-infected roots of nematode-resistant plants. RT-PCR also demonstrated that members of the Gro1 gene family are expressed in most potato tissues.

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