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Cross-protection is a phenomenon in which infection with a mild virus strain protects host plants against subsequent infection with a closely related severe virus strain. This study showed that a mild strain mutant virus, Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV)-43A could cross protect Nicotiana benthamiana plants against wild-type TMV. Furthermore, we investigated the host responses at the proteome level to identify important host proteins involved in cross-protection. We used the isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantification (iTRAQ) technique to analyze the proteome profiles of TMV, TMV-43A and cross-protected plants at different time-points. Our results showed that TMV-43A can cross-protect N. benthamiana plants from TMV. In cross-protected plants, photosynthetic activities were augmented, as supported by the increased accumulation of 1-deoxy-D-xylulose-5-phosphate reductoisomerase (DXR) and geranylgeranyl diphosphate synthase (GGPS) enzymes, which are crucial for chlorophyll biosynthesis. The increased abundance of ROS scavenging enzymes like thioredoxins and L-ascorbate peroxidase would prevent oxidative damage in cross-protected plants. Interestingly, the abundance of defence-related proteins (14-3-3 and NbSGT1) decreased, along with a reduction in virus accumulation during cross-protection. In conclusion, we have identified several important host proteins that are crucial in cross-protection to counter TMV infection in N. benthamiana plants. BIOLOGICAL
TMV is the most studied model for host-virus interaction in plants. It can infect wide varieties of plant species, causing significant economic losses. Cross protection is one of the methods to combat virus infection. A few cross-protection mechanisms have been proposed, including replicase/coat protein-mediated resistance, RNA silencing, and exclusion/spatial separation between virus strains. However, knowledge on host responses at the proteome level during cross protection is limited. To address this knowledge gap, we have leveraged on a global proteomics analysis approach to study cross protection. We discovered that TMV-43A (protector) protects N. benthamiana plants from TMV (challenger) infection through multiple host pathways: secondary metabolite biosynthesis, photosynthesis, defence, carbon metabolism, protein translation and processing and amino acid biosynthesis. In the secondary metabolite biosynthesis pathway, enzymes 1-deoxy-D-xylulose-5-phosphate reductoisomerase (DXR) and geranylgeranyl diphosphate synthase (GGPS) play crucial roles in chlorophyll biosynthesis during cross protection. In addition, accumulation of ROS scavenging enzymes was also found in cross-protected plants, providing rescues from excessive oxidative damage. Reduced abundance of plant defence proteins is correlated to reduced virus accumulation in host plants. These findings have increased our knowledge in host responses during cross-protection.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Journal of proteomics
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