Biotech Updates

Phytoalexin Accumulation in Blast Fungus-Induced Rice

July 16, 2010

Photoalexins (PA) are antifungal molecules produced in host plants as a signal for parasite infection or stress, and are usually induced in several plant-microbe interactions. Morifumi Hasegawa of Ibaraki University and colleagues studied the biosynthesis and detoxification of major rice diterpene PA in rice induced with blast fungus.

The results of their study suggest that HR in association with PA production induces strict limitation of fungus, tolerating high buildup of PA in resistant rice; while in susceptible rice, PA buildup was inhibited at the early infection stage permitting fungal growth. The researchers conclude that the fungus detoxifies the PA to invade the host plant, and immediate stimulation of PA production upon HR would be a characteristic of resistant rice to hamper blast fungus.

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