Tomato MYB49 enhances resistance to Phytophthora infestans and tolerance to water deficit and salt stress
MYB49-overexpressing tomato plants showed significant resistance to Phytophthora infestans and tolerance to drought and salt stresses. This finding reveals the potential application of tomato MYB49 in future molecular breeding.
Biotic and abiotic stresses severely reduce the productivity of tomato worldwide. Therefore, it is necessary to find key genes to simultaneously improve plant resistance to pathogens and tolerance to various abiotic stresses. In this study, based on homologous relationships with Arabidopsis R2R3-MYBs (AtMYBs) involved in responses to biotic and abiotic stresses, we identified a total of 24 R2R3-MYB transcription factors in the tomato genome. Among these tomato R2R3-MYBs, MYB49 (Solyc10g008700.1) was clustered into subgroup 11 by phylogenetic analysis, and its expression level was significantly induced after treatment with P. infestans, NaCl and PEG6000. Overexpression of MYB49 in tomato significantly enhanced the resistance of tomato to P. infestans, as evidenced by decreases in the number of necrotic cells, sizes of lesion, abundance of P. infestans, and disease index. Likewise, MYB49-overexpressing transgenic tomato plants also displayed increased tolerance to drought and salt stresses. Compared to WT plants, the accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), malonaldehyde content, and relative electrolyte leakage was decreased, and peroxidase activity, superoxide dismutase activity, chlorophyll content, and photosynthetic rate were increased in MYB49-overexpressing tomato plants under P. infestans, salt or drought stress. These results suggested that tomato MYB49, as a positive regulator, could enhance the capacity to scavenge ROS, inhibit cell membrane damage and cell death, and protect chloroplasts, resulting in an improvement in resistance to P. infestans and tolerance to salt and drought stresses, and they provide a candidate gene for tomato breeding to enhance biotic stress resistance and abiotic stress tolerance.
KeywordsBiotic and abiotic stresses MYB Resistance Tolerance Tomato
Relative electrolyte leakage
Reactive oxygen species
This work is supported by Grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (nos. 31471880 and 61472061).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.
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