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Garcia-Pedrajas M.D.,Estacion Experimental La Mayora
Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) | Year: 2010

Gene deletion is one of the most powerful tools to study gene function. In the genomics era there is great demand for fast, simple high-throughput methods for gene deletion to study the roles of the large numbers of genes that are being identified. Here we present an approach that speeds up the process of generation of deletion mutants by greatly simplifying the production of gene deletion constructs. With this purpose we have developed a method, which we named DelsGate (Deletion via Gateway), that combines PCR and Gateway cloning technology together with the use of the I-SceI homing endonuclease to generate precise deletion constructs in a very simple, universal and robust manner in just 2 days. DelsGate consists of standard PCR of only the 5' and 3' 1 kb gene flanks directly followed by in vitro Gateway cloning and final generation of the circular deletion construct by in vivo recombination in Escherichia coli. For use in DelsGate we have modified a Gateway cloning vector to include selectable markers for the transformation of Ascomycetes and the Basidiomycete fungus Ustilago maydis. The PCR and transformation steps of DelsGate should be well suited for high-throughput approaches to gene deletion construction in fungal species. We describe here the entire process, from the generation of the deletion construct with DelsGate to the analysis of the fungal transformants to test for gene replacement, with the Basidiomycete fungus Ustilago maydis. Application of DelsGate to other fungal species is also underway. Additionally, we describe how this basic approach can be adapted to other genetic manipulations with minor changes. We specifically describe its application to create unmarked deletions in Ralstonia solanacearum, a Gram-negative phytopathogenic bacterium.

Heredia-Guerrero J.A.,University of Seville | Dominguez E.,Estacion Experimental La Mayora | Luna M.,Institute Microelectronica Of Madrid Imm Csic | Benitez J.J.,University of Seville | Heredia A.,University of Malaga
Chemistry and Physics of Lipids | Year: 2010

In the present work, we report the physico-chemical properties and structural characteristics of special polyhydroxy fatty acid nanoparticles after their fusion by means of attenuated total reflection-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), X-ray diffraction (XRD), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), scanning electronic microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), and light microscopy. All the characteristics and properties investigated have an important degree of similarity to the native plant cutin, the main biopolymer present in the plant cuticles. The supramolecular organization of these polymerized prime nanoparticles after their interaction on cellulose substrate and isolated cuticle samples, simulating the in vivo conditions in epidermal plant cells, strongly suggests a growth of these nanoparticles after a self-assembly process. © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Martinez-Medina A.,CSIC - Experimental Station of El Zaidin | Fernandez I.,CSIC - Experimental Station of El Zaidin | Sanchez-Guzman M.J.,Estacion Experimental La Mayora | Jung S.C.,CSIC - Experimental Station of El Zaidin | And 2 more authors.
Frontiers in Plant Science | Year: 2013

Root colonization by selected Trichoderma isolates can activate in the plant a systemic defense response that is effective against a broad-spectrum of plant pathogens. Diverse plant hormones play pivotal roles in the regulation of the defense signaling network that leads to the induction of systemic resistance triggered by beneficial organisms [induced systemic resistance (ISR)]. Among them, jasmonic acid (JA) and ethylene (ET) signaling pathways are generally essential for ISR. However, Trichoderma ISR (TISR) is believed to involve a wider variety of signaling routes, interconnected in a complex network of cross-communicating hormone pathways. Using tomato as a model, an integrative analysis of the main mechanisms involved in the systemic resistance induced by Trichoderma harzianum against the necrotrophic leaf pathogen Botrytis cinerea was performed. Root colonization by T. harzianum rendered the leaves more resistant to B. cinerea independently of major effects on plant nutrition. The analysis of disease development in shoots of tomato mutant lines impaired in the synthesis of the key defense-related hormones JA, ET, salicylic acid (SA), and abscisic acid (ABA), and the peptide prosystemin (PS) evidenced the requirement of intact JA, SA, and ABA signaling pathways for a functional TISR. Expression analysis of several hormone-related marker genes point to the role of priming for enhanced JA-dependent defense responses upon pathogen infection. Together, our results indicate that although TISR induced in tomato against necrotrophs is mainly based on boosted JA-dependent responses, the pathways regulated by the plant hormones SA- and ABA are also required for successful TISR development. © 2013 Martínez-Medina, Fernández, Sánchez-Guzmán, Jung, Pascual and Pozo.

Garcia-Pedrajas M.D.,University of Georgia | Baeza-Montanez L.,Estacion Experimental La Mayora | Gold S.E.,University of Georgia
Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions | Year: 2010

In Ustilago maydis, the causal agent of corn smut, the morphological transition from yeast to filamentous growth is inextricably linked to pathogenicity; budding haploid cells are saprobic and, upon mating of compatible strains, the fungus converts to dikaryotic filamentous growth and obligate parasitism. The filamentous dikaryon proliferates in the host plant, inducing tumor formation and undergoing additional morphological changes that eventually result in the production of melanized diploid teliospores. In an attempt to identify new trans -acting factors that regulate morphogenesis in U. maydis, we searched for the presence of common binding sequences in the promoter region of a set of 37 genes downregulated in the filamentous form. Putative cis-acting regulatory sequences fitting the consensus binding site for the Aspergillus nidulans transcription factor StuA were identified in 13 of these genes. StuA is a member of the APSES transcription factors which contain a highly conserved DNA-binding domain with a basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH)-like structure. This class of proteins comprises critical regulators of developmental processes in ascomycete fungi such as dimorphic growth, mating, and sporulation but has not been studied in any fungus of the phylum Basidiomycota. A search for StuA orthologs in the U. maydis genome identified a single closely related protein that we designated Ustl. Deletion of ust1 in budding haploid wild-type and solopathogenic strains led to filamentous growth and abolished mating, gall induction, and, consequently, in planta teliosporogenesis. Furthermore, cultures of ust1 null mutants produced abundant thick-walled, highly pigmented cells resembling teliospores which are normally produced only in planta. We showed that ssp1, a gene highly induced in teliospores produced in the host, is also abundantly expressed in cultures of ust1 null mutants containing these pigmented cells. Our results are consistent with a major role for ust1 in regulating dimorphism, virulence, and the sporulation program in U. maydis. © 2010 The American Phytopathological Society.

Rocha K.C.G.,Sao Paulo State University | Marubayashi J.M.,Sao Paulo State University | Navas-Castillo J.,Estacion Experimental La Mayora | Pavan M.A.,Sao Paulo State University | Krause-Sakate R.,Sao Paulo State University
Summa Phytopathologica | Year: 2010

From January/2007 to July/2008 a survey was carried out to evaluate the occurrence of begomoviruses in pepper and tomato crops from São Paulo State. Total DNA was extracted from 710 pepper and 103 tomato samples, and the presence of begomoviruses was tested by Polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The same samples were tested by Rolling Circle Amplification (RCA) followed by PCR, and some positive samples analyzed by RCA-RFLP and cleaved by the restriction enzyme HpaII to evaluate the genetic variability of these isolates. By PCR, 99 (13.94%) samples collected from pepper and 39 (37.86%) from tomato were positives for the presence of begomovirus, while by RCA-PCR 333 (46.90%) and 82 (79.61%) from pepper and tomato, respectively, indicating higher sensitivity of this technique. The 5' region of the coat protein (CP) gene and a segment of the intergenic region was analyzed indicating the presence of Tomato severe rugose virus (ToSRV) in pepper and tomato plants. However, the partial sequencing of clones from RCA products from a tomato sample indicated mixed infection of ToSRV with Tomato yellow vein streak virus (ToYVSV). By RCA-RFLP four restriction profiles were observed for ToSRV in pepper, while 18 profiles for begomovirus from tomato plants, indicating higher degree of genetic variability for begomovirus found in tomato plants compared to that in pepper plants.

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