Phosphorylation of a WRKY Transcription Factor by Two Pathogen-Responsive MAPKs Drives Phytoalexin Biosynthesis in Arabidopsis

Phosphorylation of a WRKY Transcription Factor by Two Pathogen-Responsive MAPKs Drives... Plant sensing of invading pathogens triggers massive metabolic reprogramming, including the induction of secondary antimicrobial compounds known as phytoalexins. We recently reported that MPK3 and MPK6, two pathogen-responsive mitogen-activated protein kinases, play essential roles in the induction of camalexin, the major phytoalexin in Arabidopsis thaliana . In search of the transcription factors downstream of MPK3/MPK6, we found that WRKY33 is required for MPK3/MPK6-induced camalexin biosynthesis. In wrky33 mutants, both gain-of-function MPK3/MPK6- and pathogen-induced camalexin production are compromised, which is associated with the loss of camalexin biosynthetic gene activation. WRKY33 is a pathogen-inducible transcription factor, whose expression is regulated by the MPK3/MPK6 cascade. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays reveal that WRKY33 binds to its own promoter in vivo, suggesting a potential positive feedback regulatory loop. Furthermore, WRKY33 is a substrate of MPK3/MPK6. Mutation of MPK3/MPK6 phosphorylation sites in WRKY33 compromises its ability to complement the camalexin induction in the wrky33 mutant. Using a phospho-protein mobility shift assay, we demonstrate that WRKY33 is phosphorylated by MPK3/MPK6 in vivo in response to Botrytis cinerea infection. Based on these data, we conclude that WRKY33 functions downstream of MPK3/MPK6 in reprogramming the expression of camalexin biosynthetic genes, which drives the metabolic flow to camalexin production in Arabidopsis challenged by pathogens. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png

Phosphorylation of a WRKY Transcription Factor by Two Pathogen-Responsive MAPKs Drives Phytoalexin Biosynthesis in Arabidopsis

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Publisher
American Society of Plant Biologists
Copyright
Copyright © 2015 by the American Society of Plant Biologists
ISSN
1040-4651
eISSN
1532-298X
D.O.I.
10.1105/tpc.111.084996
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Plant sensing of invading pathogens triggers massive metabolic reprogramming, including the induction of secondary antimicrobial compounds known as phytoalexins. We recently reported that MPK3 and MPK6, two pathogen-responsive mitogen-activated protein kinases, play essential roles in the induction of camalexin, the major phytoalexin in Arabidopsis thaliana . In search of the transcription factors downstream of MPK3/MPK6, we found that WRKY33 is required for MPK3/MPK6-induced camalexin biosynthesis. In wrky33 mutants, both gain-of-function MPK3/MPK6- and pathogen-induced camalexin production are compromised, which is associated with the loss of camalexin biosynthetic gene activation. WRKY33 is a pathogen-inducible transcription factor, whose expression is regulated by the MPK3/MPK6 cascade. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays reveal that WRKY33 binds to its own promoter in vivo, suggesting a potential positive feedback regulatory loop. Furthermore, WRKY33 is a substrate of MPK3/MPK6. Mutation of MPK3/MPK6 phosphorylation sites in WRKY33 compromises its ability to complement the camalexin induction in the wrky33 mutant. Using a phospho-protein mobility shift assay, we demonstrate that WRKY33 is phosphorylated by MPK3/MPK6 in vivo in response to Botrytis cinerea infection. Based on these data, we conclude that WRKY33 functions downstream of MPK3/MPK6 in reprogramming the expression of camalexin biosynthetic genes, which drives the metabolic flow to camalexin production in Arabidopsis challenged by pathogens.

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