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J Genet Genomics. 2010 Jun;37(6):359-69. doi: 10.1016/S1673-8527(09)60054-0. Epub 2010 Jul 1.

PKS5, a SNF1-related kinase, interacts with and phosphorylates NPR1, and modulates expression of WRKY38 and WRKY62.

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College of Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing, China.


NPR1 (Nonexpressor of Pathogenesis-Related gene 1) is a major co-activator of plant defense. Phosphorylations of NPR1 play important roles in fine-tuning its activity, however a kinase corresponding to such modification remains uncharacterized. Here, we report that NPR1 interacts with PKS5 (SOS2-like Protein Kinase 5). The AKR (AnKyrin Repeats) motif of NPR1 is required for this interaction. PKS5 phosphorylates NPR1 at the C-terminal region. Expression of PKS5 is induced quickly by Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000. Expression level of two NPR1 target genes, WRKY38 and WRKY62, is reduced and/or delayed in pks5 mutants. Moreover, the expression of WRKY38 and WRKY62 displays a similar pattern in npr1-1pks5-1 double mutant comparing to that in npr1-1. Our results suggest that PKS5 functions at the upstream of NPR1 and might mediate expression of WRKY38 and WRKY62 possibly by interacting with and phosphorylating NPR1.

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