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Nat Commun. 2013;4:2530. doi: 10.1038/ncomms3530.

Plant immune response to pathogens differs with changing temperatures.

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1] Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Institute for Plant Genomics and Biotechnology, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas 77843, USA [2].


Temperature fluctuation is a key determinant for microbial invasion and host evasion. In contrast to mammals that maintain constant body temperature, plant temperature oscillates on a daily basis. It remains elusive how plants operate inducible defenses in response to temperature fluctuation. Here we report that ambient temperature changes lead to pronounced shifts of the following two distinct plant immune responses: pattern-triggered immunity (PTI) and effector-triggered immunity (ETI). Plants preferentially activate ETI signaling at relatively low temperatures (10-23 °C), whereas they switch to PTI signaling at moderately elevated temperatures (23-32 °C). The Arabidopsis arp6 and hta9hta11 mutants, phenocopying plants grown at elevated temperatures, exhibit enhanced PTI and yet reduced ETI responses. As the secretion of bacterial effectors favours low temperatures, whereas bacteria multiply vigorously at elevated temperatures accompanied with increased microbe-associated molecular pattern production, our findings suggest that temperature oscillation might have driven dynamic co-evolution of distinct plant immune signaling responding to pathogen physiological changes.

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