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New Phytol. 2019 Mar 18. doi: 10.1111/nph.15792. [Epub ahead of print]

Salivary DNase II from Laodelphax striatellus acts as an effector that suppresses plant defence.

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Department of Entomology, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, 210095, China.
Institute of Insect Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, 310058, China.


Extracellular DNA, released by damaged plant cells, acts as a damage-associated molecular pattern (DAMP). We demonstrated previously that the small brown planthopper (Laodelphax striatellus, SBPH) secreted DNase II when feeding on artificial diets. However, the function of DNase II in insect feeding remained elusive. The influences of DNase II on SBPHs and rice plants were investigated by suppressing expression of DNase II or by application of heterogeneously expressed DNase II. We demonstrated that DNase II is mainly expressed in the salivary gland and is responsible for DNA-degrading activity of saliva. Knocking down the expression of DNase II resulted in decreased performance of SBPH reared on rice plants. The dsDNase II-treated SBPH did not influenced jasmonic acid (JA), salicylic acid (SA), ethylene (ET) pathways, but elicited a higher level of H2 O2 and callose accumulation. Application of heterogeneously expressed DNase II in DNase II-deficient saliva slightly reduced the wound-induced defence response. We propose a DNase II-based invading model for SBPH feeding on host plants, and provide a potential target for pest management.


DNase II; effector; extracellular DNA; planthopper; plant−insect interaction


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