Functional Plant Biology Functional Plant Biology Society
Plant function and evolutionary biology

Production of reactive oxygen species during non-specific elicitation, non-host resistance and field resistance expression in cultured tobacco cells

Amanda J. Able, Mark W. Sutherland and David I. Guest

Functional Plant Biology 30(1) 91 - 99
Published: 31 January 2003


We examined production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and induction of cell death in tissue-cultured tobacco cells undergoing different disease resistance responses. A superoxide-dependent hypersensitive response occurs during both the race-specific resistance response of tobacco cells challenged with incompatible zoospores of Phytophthora nicotianae and during non-specific elicitation of tobacco cells challenged with Phytophthora glucan elicitors extracted from the fungal cell wall. Inhibition studies are consistent with dependence upon endogenous Ca2+ levels, and with involvement of NAD(P)H oxidase and peroxidases in production of ROS during both specific and non-specific elicitation. The patterns of resistance expression during non-host resistance or field resistance responses appear to be similar to race-specific resistance expression with regard to the timing and order of events. However, the intensity of the response is very much reduced. In contrast, during non-specific elicitation, these temporal patterns are significantly altered. The differences in timing, intensity and extent of responses during different modes of disease resistance expression indicate that stimulation of cultured plant cells with non-specific soluble fractions in order to model in planta events during plant / Oomycete and, by implication, plant / fungal interactions, has significant limitations.

Keywords: disease resistance, glucan elicitors, plant– pathogen interactions, reactive oxygen species.

© CSIRO 2003

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