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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Verticillium comparative genomics yields insights into niche adaptation by plant vascular wilt pathogens

item Klosterman, Steven
item Subbarao, Krishna -
item Kang, Seogchan -
item Veronese, Paola -
item Gold, Scott -
item Thomma, Bart -
item Chen, Zehua -
item Henrissat, Bernard -
item Lee, Yong-Hwan -
item Park, Jongsun -
item Garcia-Pedrajas, Maria -
item Barbara, Dez -
item Anchieta, Amy
item DE Jonge, Ronnie -
item Santhanam, Partha -
item Maruthachalam, Karunakaran -
item Atallah, Zahi -
item Amyotte, Stefan -
item Paz, Zahi -
item Inderbitzin, Patrik -
item Hayes, Ryan
item Heiman, David -
item Young, Sarah -
item Zeng, Qiandong -
item Engels, Reinhard -
item Galagan, James -
item Cuomo, Christina -
item Dobinson, Katherine -
item Ma, Li-Jun -

Submitted to: Plant and Animal Genome Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: October 14, 2010
Publication Date: January 17, 2011
Repository URL:
Citation: Klosterman, S.J., Subbarao, K.V., Kang, S., Veronese, P., Gold, S.E., Thomma, B.J., Chen, Z., Henrissat, B., Lee, Y., Park, J., Garcia-Pedrajas, M.D., Barbara, D., Anchieta, A.G., De Jonge, R., Santhanam, P., Maruthachalam, K., Atallah, Z.K., Amyotte, S., Paz, Z., Inderbitzin, P., Hayes, R.J., Heiman, D.I., Young, S., Zeng, Q., Engels, R., Galagan, J., Cuomo, C., Dobinson, K.F., Ma, L. 2011. Verticillium comparative genomics yields insights into niche adaptation by plant vascular wilt pathogens. Plant and Animal Genome Conference. Online.

Technical Abstract: The vascular wilt fungi Verticillium dahliae and V. albo-atrum infect over 200 plant species worldwide, causing recurring crop losses estimated in the billions of dollars annually. Plant pathogenic Verticillium species are soilborne, and produce dormant structures that enable survival for years in the soil without a host. However, following germination, these pathogens infect and colonize the plant vascular system. To gain insights into the mechanisms that confer pathogenicity and proliferation in the unique ecological niche of the plant vascular system, the genomes of two Verticillium wilt pathogens were sequenced and compared to each other, and with the proteome of Fusarium oxysporum, another fungal vascular wilt pathogen. The analyses revealed that Verticillium spp. have an extraordinary capacity to degrade plant pectin, a capacity that may confer an ability to infect a broad range of plant hosts and to colonize plants systemically. The comparative studies further revealed a set of proteins that are conserved among all three wilt pathogens, including homologs of a bacterial glucosyl transferase with known roles in the synthesis of osmoregulated periplasmic glucans and pathogenicity. In addition, the high level of synteny between the two Verticillium genomes highlighted four lineage-specific regions in V. dahliae that are enriched in transposon sequences and particular gene families, features that may contribute to the increased genetic plasticity of V. dahliae. The study reveals insights into the niche adaptation of this group of agriculturally important plant pathogens, and sheds light on potential avenues for the development of novel disease management strategies.

Last Modified: 8/24/2016
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