|Thomma, Bart P.h.j.|
|Jonge, Ronnie De|
Submitted to: Phytopathology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/1/2011
Publication Date: 6/1/2011
Citation: Klosterman, S.J., Subbarao, K.V., Kang, S., Veronese, P., Gold, S.E., Thomma, B., Chen, Z., Henrissat, B., Lee, Y., Park, J., Garcia-Pedrajas, M.D., Barbara, D., Anchieta, A.G., Jonge, R., Santhanam, P., Maruthachalam, K., Atallah, Z.K., Amyotte, S., Paz, Z., Inderbitzin, P., Hayes, R.J., Heiman, D., 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. Phytopathology. 101:S208. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: The vascular wilt fungi Verticillium dahliae and V. albo-atrum infect over 200 plant species, causing billions of dollars in annual losses. The characteristic vascular wilt symptoms are a result of colonization and proliferation of the pathogens in the xylem vessels. To gain insights into the mechanisms that confer pathogenicity among wilt fungi, we sequenced two Verticillium wilt pathogens and compared their sequences to each other, and with the proteome of Fusarium oxysporum, another fungal wilt pathogen. Among a set of proteins conserved in the three wilt fungi, we identified homologs of a bacterial virulence factor that was likely acquired by the fungi through horizontal transfer events, and may contribute to the adaptation to proliferate within the plant xylem. Compared to other fungi, the Verticillium genomes encode more plant cell wall degrading enzymes, providing an extraordinary capacity to degrade plant pectin. Comparison of the two closely related Verticillium genomes uncovered variable genomic islands in the primary causal agent of Verticillium wilts, Verticillium dahliae. Coupled with the impressive arsenal of plant cell wall-degrading enzymes, the variable genomic islands may provide enhanced genetic diversity for host range expansion. In summary, our study reveals insights into niche adaptation of fungal wilt pathogens and sheds light on avenues to follow for the development of disease management strategies.