NaMYC2 transcription factor regulates a subset of plant defense responses in Nicotiana attenuata

Melkamu G. Woldemariam, Son Truong Dinh, Youngjoo Oh, Emmanuel Gaquerel, Ian T. Baldwin, Ivan Galis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: To survive herbivore attack, plants have evolved potent mechanisms of mechanical or chemical defense that are either constitutively present or inducible after herbivore attack. Due to the costs of defense deployment, plants often regulate their biosynthesis using various transcription factors (TFs). MYC2 regulators belong to the bHLH family of transcription factors that are involved in many aspects of plant defense and development. In this study, we identified a novel MYC2 TF from N. attenuata and characterized its regulatory function using a combination of molecular, analytic and ecological methods.Results: The transcript and targeted metabolite analyses demonstrated that NaMYC2 is mainly involved in the regulation of the biosynthesis of nicotine and phenolamides in N. attenuata. In addition, using broadly-targeted metabolite analysis, we identified a number of other metabolite features that were regulated by NaMYC2, which, after full annotation, are expected to broaden our understanding of plant defense regulation. Unlike previous reports, the biosynthesis of jasmonates and some JA-/NaCOI1-dependent metabolites (e.g. HGL-DTGs) were not strongly regulated by NaMYC2, suggesting the involvement of other independent regulators. No significant differences were observed in the performance of M. sexta on MYC2-silenced plants, consistent with the well-known ability of this specialist insect to tolerate nicotine.Conclusion: By regulating the biosynthesis of nicotine, NaMYC2 is likely to enhance plant resistance against non-adapted herbivores and contribute to plant fitness; however, multiple JA/NaCOI1-dependent mechanisms (perhaps involving other MYCs) that regulate separate defense responses are likely to exist in N. attenuata. The considerable variation observed amongst different plant families in the responses regulated by jasmonate signaling highlights the sophistication with which plants craft highly specific and fine-tuned responses against the herbivores that attack them.

Original languageEnglish
Article number73
JournalBMC Plant Biology
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2013

Fingerprint

transcription factors
nicotine
herbivores
biosynthesis
metabolites
Nicotiana attenuata
handicrafts
jasmonic acid
insects

Keywords

  • bHLH
  • Manduca sexta
  • MYC2
  • Nicotiana attenuata
  • Nicotine
  • Phenolamides
  • Plant-insect interactions
  • Transcription factors
  • Transcriptional regulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Plant Science

Cite this

NaMYC2 transcription factor regulates a subset of plant defense responses in Nicotiana attenuata. / Woldemariam, Melkamu G.; Dinh, Son Truong; Oh, Youngjoo; Gaquerel, Emmanuel; Baldwin, Ian T.; Galis, Ivan.

In: BMC Plant Biology, Vol. 13, No. 1, 73, 01.05.2013.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Woldemariam, Melkamu G. ; Dinh, Son Truong ; Oh, Youngjoo ; Gaquerel, Emmanuel ; Baldwin, Ian T. ; Galis, Ivan. / NaMYC2 transcription factor regulates a subset of plant defense responses in Nicotiana attenuata. In: BMC Plant Biology. 2013 ; Vol. 13, No. 1.
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abstract = "Background: To survive herbivore attack, plants have evolved potent mechanisms of mechanical or chemical defense that are either constitutively present or inducible after herbivore attack. Due to the costs of defense deployment, plants often regulate their biosynthesis using various transcription factors (TFs). MYC2 regulators belong to the bHLH family of transcription factors that are involved in many aspects of plant defense and development. In this study, we identified a novel MYC2 TF from N. attenuata and characterized its regulatory function using a combination of molecular, analytic and ecological methods.Results: The transcript and targeted metabolite analyses demonstrated that NaMYC2 is mainly involved in the regulation of the biosynthesis of nicotine and phenolamides in N. attenuata. In addition, using broadly-targeted metabolite analysis, we identified a number of other metabolite features that were regulated by NaMYC2, which, after full annotation, are expected to broaden our understanding of plant defense regulation. Unlike previous reports, the biosynthesis of jasmonates and some JA-/NaCOI1-dependent metabolites (e.g. HGL-DTGs) were not strongly regulated by NaMYC2, suggesting the involvement of other independent regulators. No significant differences were observed in the performance of M. sexta on MYC2-silenced plants, consistent with the well-known ability of this specialist insect to tolerate nicotine.Conclusion: By regulating the biosynthesis of nicotine, NaMYC2 is likely to enhance plant resistance against non-adapted herbivores and contribute to plant fitness; however, multiple JA/NaCOI1-dependent mechanisms (perhaps involving other MYCs) that regulate separate defense responses are likely to exist in N. attenuata. The considerable variation observed amongst different plant families in the responses regulated by jasmonate signaling highlights the sophistication with which plants craft highly specific and fine-tuned responses against the herbivores that attack them.",
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AU - Woldemariam, Melkamu G.

AU - Dinh, Son Truong

AU - Oh, Youngjoo

AU - Gaquerel, Emmanuel

AU - Baldwin, Ian T.

AU - Galis, Ivan

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AB - Background: To survive herbivore attack, plants have evolved potent mechanisms of mechanical or chemical defense that are either constitutively present or inducible after herbivore attack. Due to the costs of defense deployment, plants often regulate their biosynthesis using various transcription factors (TFs). MYC2 regulators belong to the bHLH family of transcription factors that are involved in many aspects of plant defense and development. In this study, we identified a novel MYC2 TF from N. attenuata and characterized its regulatory function using a combination of molecular, analytic and ecological methods.Results: The transcript and targeted metabolite analyses demonstrated that NaMYC2 is mainly involved in the regulation of the biosynthesis of nicotine and phenolamides in N. attenuata. In addition, using broadly-targeted metabolite analysis, we identified a number of other metabolite features that were regulated by NaMYC2, which, after full annotation, are expected to broaden our understanding of plant defense regulation. Unlike previous reports, the biosynthesis of jasmonates and some JA-/NaCOI1-dependent metabolites (e.g. HGL-DTGs) were not strongly regulated by NaMYC2, suggesting the involvement of other independent regulators. No significant differences were observed in the performance of M. sexta on MYC2-silenced plants, consistent with the well-known ability of this specialist insect to tolerate nicotine.Conclusion: By regulating the biosynthesis of nicotine, NaMYC2 is likely to enhance plant resistance against non-adapted herbivores and contribute to plant fitness; however, multiple JA/NaCOI1-dependent mechanisms (perhaps involving other MYCs) that regulate separate defense responses are likely to exist in N. attenuata. The considerable variation observed amongst different plant families in the responses regulated by jasmonate signaling highlights the sophistication with which plants craft highly specific and fine-tuned responses against the herbivores that attack them.

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KW - Transcriptional regulation

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