Send to

Choose Destination
Fungal Genet Biol. 2013 Dec;61:111-9. doi: 10.1016/j.fgb.2013.09.002. Epub 2013 Sep 21.

Two members of the Ustilago maydis velvet family influence teliospore development and virulence on maize seedlings.

Author information

Department of Plant Pathology, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA.


Members of the fungal-specific velvet protein family regulate sexual and asexual spore production in the Ascomycota. We predicted, therefore, that velvet homologs in the basidiomycetous plant pathogen Ustilago maydis would regulate sexual spore development, which is also associated with plant disease progression in this fungus. To test this hypothesis, we studied the function of three U. maydis velvet genes, umv1, umv2 and umv3. Using a gene replacement strategy, deletion mutants were made in all three genes in compatible haploid strains, and additionally for umv1 and umv2 in the solopathogenic strain, SG200. None of the mutants showed novel morphological phenotypes during yeast-like, in vitro growth. However, the Δumv1 mutants failed to induce galls or teliospores in maize. Chlorazol black E staining of leaves infected with Δumv1 dikaryons revealed that the Δumv1 hyphae did not proliferate normally and were blocked developmentally before teliospore formation. The Δumv2 mutants were able to induce galls and teliospores in maize, but were slow to do so and thus reduced in virulence. The Δumv3 mutants were not affected in teliospore formation or disease progression. Complementation of the Δumv1 and Δumv2 mutations in the SG200 background produced disease indices similar to those of SG200. These results indicate that two U. maydis velvet family members, umv1 and umv2, are important for normal teliospore development and disease progression in maize seedlings.


Sexual development; Teliospore; Ustilago maydis; Velvet family; Virulence

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center