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PLoS One. 2011;6(8):e23555. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0023555. Epub 2011 Aug 24.

Novel cellulose-binding-domain protein in Phytophthora is cell wall localized.

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Genetic Improvement of Fruit and Vegetables Laboratory, United States Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service, Beltsville, Maryland, United States of America.


Cellulose binding domains (CBD) in the carbohydrate binding module family 1 (CBM1) are structurally conserved regions generally linked to catalytic regions of cellulolytic enzymes. While widespread amongst saprophytic fungi that subsist on plant cell wall polysaccharides, they are absent amongst most plant pathogenic fungal cellulases. A genome wide survey for CBM1 was performed on the highly destructive plant pathogen Phytophthora infestans, a fungal-like Stramenopile, to determine if it harbored cellulolytic enzymes with CBM1. Only five genes were found to encode CBM1, and none were associated with catalytic domains. Surveys of other genomes indicated that the CBM1-containing proteins, lacking other domains, represent a unique group of proteins largely confined to the Stramenopiles. Immunolocalization of one of these proteins, CBD1, indicated that it is embedded in the hyphal cell wall. Proteins with CBM1 domains can have plant host elicitor activity, but tests with Agrobacterium-mediated in planta expression and synthetic peptide infiltration failed to identify plant hypersensitive elicitation with CBD1. A structural basis for differential elicitor activity is proposed.

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