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Plant Cell Environ. 2007 Feb;30(2):187-201.

Involvement of the xyloglucan endotransglycosylase/hydrolases encoded by celery XTH1 and Arabidopsis XTH33 in the phloem response to aphids.

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Laboratoire de Biologie Cellulaire UR501, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA), Versailles F-78026, France.


During infestation, phloem-feeding insects induce transcriptional reprogramming in plants that may lead to protection. Transcripts of the celery XTH1 gene, encoding a xyloglucan endotransglycosylase/hydrolase (XTH), were previously found to accumulate systemically in celery (Apium graveolens) phloem, following infestation with the generalist aphid Myzus persicae. XTH1 induction was specific to the phloem but was not correlated with an increase in xyloglucan endotransglycosylase (XET) activity in the phloem. XTH1 is homologous to the Arabidopsis thaliana XTH33 gene. XTH33 expression was investigated following M. persicae infestation. The pattern of XTH33 expression is tightly controlled during development and indicates a possible role in cell expansion. An xth33 mutant was assayed for preference assay with M. persicae. Aphids settled preferentially on the mutant rather than on the wild type. This suggests that XTH33 is involved in protecting plants against aphids; therefore, that cell wall modification can alter the preference of aphids for a particular plant. Nevertheless, the ectopic expression of XTH33 in phloem tissue was not sufficient to confer protection, demonstrating that modifying the expression of this single gene does not readily alter plant-aphid interactions.

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