Crop Biotech Update

Tomato Immune Receptor Ve1 Confers Ave1-dependent Verticillium Resistance in Tobacco and Cotton

November 22, 2017

Verticillium wilts caused by soil-borne species of the Verticillium genus are important plant diseases that affect a wide range of host plants and are notoriously difficult to combat. In tomato, race-specific resistance to Verticillium wilt is governed by the cell surface-localized immune receptor Ve1 through recognition of the effector protein Ave1 that is secreted by race 1 strains of Verticillium.

Previous studies have demonstrated that transgenic expression of tomato Ve1 in Arabidopsis thaliana leads to Verticillium wilt resistance. The team of Yin song from Wageningen University in the Netherlands tested if tomato Ve1 can confer resistance when expressed in tobacco (Nicotiana tabaccum) and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum).

Transgenic tobacco and cotton plants expressing tomato Ve1 exhibited enhanced resistance against Verticillium wilt. This demonstrates the functionality of tomato Ve1 in Verticillium wilt resistance through recognition of the Verticillium effector Ave1.

These results suggest that transfer of tomato Ve1 across plant species can be exploited in breeding programs to engineer Verticillium wilt resistance.

For more information on this study, read the article in Plant Biotechnology Journal.