Ethylene responsive factors (ERFs) are important in regulating plant pathogen resistance, abiotic stress tolerance and plant development. Recent studies have greatly enlarged the ERF protein family and revealed more important roles of ERFs in plants. Here, we report our finding of a tomato ERF protein TSRF1, which is transcriptionally up-regulated by ethylene, salicylic acid, or Ralstonia solanacearum strain BJ1057 infection. Biochemical analysis indicates that TSRF1 specifically interacts in vitro with the GCC box, an element present in the promoters of many pathogenesis-related (PR) genes. Further investigation evidences that TSRF1 activates in vivothe expression of reporter β-glucuronidase gene controlled by GCC box. More importantly, overexpressing TSRF1 in tobacco and tomato constitutively activates the expression of PR genes, and subsequently enhancing transgenic plant resistance to the bacterial wilt caused by Ralstonia solanacearum strain BJ1057. Therefore our investigation not only extends the functions of ERF proteins in plant resistance to R. solanacearum, but also provides further clues to understanding the mechanism of host regulatory proteins in response to the infection of pathogens.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 30, 2004
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