Plant Biotechnology Reports

, Volume 6, Issue 4, pp 263–274 | Cite as

Overexpression of sense and antisense ced-9 in tobacco plants confers resistance to Meloidogyne incognita

  • Alejandro Calderón-Urrea
  • Fumiko Yamamoto
  • Thihan Padukkavidana
  • Abdellatif Bahaji
  • Davis W. Cheng
  • Glenda W. Polack
Original Article


Transgenic tobacco plants expressing the Caenorhabditis elegans programmed cell death gene ced-9, in both sense and antisense orientations, were produced using Agrobacteriumtumefaciens-mediated transformation. The generated transgenic tobacco plants were tested for resistance to the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne incognita by measuring gall formation, size of galls generated, and the ability of juvenile-2 (J2) to hatch. Results showed that expression of ced-9 gene in either sense (ced-9F) or antisense (ced-9R) orientation in hemizygous transgenic tobacco plants induced prevention of M. incognita proliferation (as measured by gall number reduction) and J2 hatching. Furthermore, the results also showed that ced-9R in homozygous transgenic tobacco plants prevented J2 hatching, whereas ced-9F homozygous transgenic tobacco plants lost nematicidal function. Although our study demonstrates that expression of either ced-9R or ced-9F genes in tobacco plants significantly reduces infection by M. incognita, further investigation is required to understand the specific mechanisms involved for this control. It is possible that the nematode resistance seen with both sense (ced-9F) and antisense (ced-9R) sequences is the result of two independent mechanisms, one acting on invading nematodes and the other acting during embryogenesis of M. incognita, ultimately resulting in plant protection.


Cell death genes Root-knot nematode Plant parasitic nematode resistance ced-9 Tobacco transgenic plants 


ced gene

C. elegans death gene


C. elegans death gene protein product


Competitive polymerase chain reaction


Second stage juveniles


Programmed cell death


Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction


Root knot nematodes


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Copyright information

© Korean Society for Plant Biotechnology and Springer 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alejandro Calderón-Urrea
    • 5
  • Fumiko Yamamoto
    • 1
  • Thihan Padukkavidana
    • 2
  • Abdellatif Bahaji
    • 3
  • Davis W. Cheng
    • 5
  • Glenda W. Polack
    • 4
  1. 1.Histocompatibility, Immunogenetics, and Disease Profiling LaboratoryStanford University School of MedicinePalo AltoUSA
  2. 2.Program in Cellular Neuroscience, Neurodegeneration and RepairYale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA
  3. 3.Instituto de AgrobiotecnologiaMutilva BajaSpain
  4. 4.Medical Education Program, Orthopedic Surgery ResidencyUCSF-FresnoFresnoUSA
  5. 5.Department of Biology MS/SB73California State University, FresnoFresnoUSA

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