Host-induced silencing of Mi-msp-1 confers resistance to root-knot nematode Meloidogyne incognita in eggplant
RNA interference (RNAi)-based host-induced gene silencing (HIGS) is emerging as a novel, efficient and target-specific tool to combat phytonematode infection in crop plants. Mi-msp-1, an effector gene expressed in the subventral pharyngeal gland cells of Meloidogyne incognita plays an important role in the parasitic process. Mi-msp-1 effector is conserved in few of the species of root-knot nematodes (RKNs) and does not share considerable homology with the other phytonematodes, thereby making it a suitable target for HIGS with minimal off-target effects. Six putative eggplant transformants harbouring a single copy RNAi transgene of Mi-msp-1 was generated. Stable expression of the transgene was detected in T1, T2 and T3 transgenic lines for which a detrimental effect on RKN penetration, development and reproduction was documented upon challenge infection with nematode juveniles. The post-parasitic nematode stages extracted from the transgenic plants showed long-term RNAi effect in terms of targeted downregulation of Mi-msp-1. These findings suggest that HIGS of Mi-msp-1 enhances nematode resistance in eggplant and protect the plant against RKN parasitism at very early stage.
KeywordsdsRNA siRNA Parasitism Southern hybridization RT-qPCR
Ph.D. Student SC acknowledges her co-guide Dr. Vishakha Raina, School of Biotechnology, KIIT, Bhubaneswar, India. Current investigation was funded by Department of Biotechnology, Government of India (Grant No. BT/PR5908/AGR/36/727/2012).
SC performed all the experiments. TKD wrote the MS and analysed of the data. NT, TNS, PKP and KAC helped in performing experiments. UR conceived the experiment and edited the MS. All the authors read and approved the final MS.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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