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Plant J. 2004 Oct;40(2):213-24.

Expression of RPS4 in tobacco induces an AvrRps4-independent HR that requires EDS1, SGT1 and HSP90.

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The Sainsbury Laboratory, John Innes Centre, Colney Lane, Norwich, NR4 7UH, UK.


The Arabidopsis RPS4 gene belongs to the Toll/interleukin-1 receptor/nucleotide-binding site/leucine-rich repeat (TIR-NB-LRR) class of plant resistance (R) genes. It confers resistance to Pseudomonas syringae carrying the avirulence gene avrRps4. Transient expression of genomic RPS4 driven by the 35S promoter in tobacco leaves induces an AvrRps4-independent hypersensitive response (HR). The same phenotype is seen after expression of a full-length RPS4 cDNA. This indicates that alternative splicing of RPS4 is not involved in this HR. The extent of HR is correlated with RPS4 protein levels. Deletion analyses of RPS4 domains show the TIR domain is required for the HR phenotype. Mutations in the P-loop motif of the NB domain abolish the HR. Using virus-induced gene silencing, we found that the cell death resulting from RPS4 expression is dependent on the three plant signalling components EDS1, SGT1 and HSP90. All these data suggest that heterologous expression of an R gene can result in activation of cell death even in the absence of its cognate avirulence product, and provides a system for studying the RPS4 domains required for HR.

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