, Volume 54, Issue 2, pp 609-622

Overexpression of Camellia sinensis Thaumatin-Like Protein, CsTLP in Potato Confers Enhanced Resistance to Macrophomina phaseolina and Phytophthora infestans Infection

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Abstract

Thaumatin-like proteins (TLPs), a class of pathogenesis related proteins are induced in response to pathogens and exhibit antifungal property when overexpressed in transgenic plants. In the present study, we have raised transgenic potato plants overexpressing TLP gene of Camellia sinensis (CsTLP). Fungal resistance assays of transgenic potato elucidated the potential role of CsTLP in imparting tolerance to fungal pathogens, Macrophomina phaseolina (necrotrophic) and Phytophthora infestans (hemi-biotrophic). Transgenic tubers with higher resistance to M. phaseolina, showed a concomitant and significant increase in transcripts of StPAL, StLOX, and StTLP genes involved in phenylpropanoid, lipoxygenase, and general defense response pathway, respectively after infection. Importantly, leaves of CsTLP transgenic lines inoculated with P. infestans spores under in vitro conditions also showed a resistant phenotype. The resistant phenotype recorded for the two important fungal pathogens by CsTLP transgenic potato plants is remarkable, since no effective control methods and no resistant cv. against M. phaseolina has been identified so far in potato.