Plant Molecular Biology

, Volume 58, Issue 6, pp 887–897 | Cite as

Calmodulin-like Proteins from Arabidopsis and Tomato are Involved in Host Defense Against Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato

  • David Chiasson
  • Sophia K. Ekengren
  • Gregory B. Martin
  • Stephanie L. Dobney
  • Wayne A. SneddenEmail author


Complex signal transduction pathways underlie the myriad plant responses to attack by pathogens. Ca2+ is a universal second messenger in eukaryotes that modulates various signal transduction pathways through stimulus-specific changes in its intracellular concentration. Ca2+-binding proteins such as calmodulin (CaM) detect Ca2+ signals and regulate downstream targets as part of a coordinated cellular response to a given stimulus. Here we report the characterization of a tomato gene (APR134) encoding a CaM-related protein that is induced in disease-resistant leaves in response to attack by Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato. We show that suppression of APR134 gene expression in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum), using virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS), compromises the plant’s immune response. We isolated APR134-like genes from Arabidopsis, termed CML42 and CML43, to investigate whether they serve a functionally similar role. Gene expression analysis revealed that CML43 is rapidly induced in disease-resistant Arabidopsis leaves following inoculation with Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato. Overexpression of CML43 in Arabidopsis accelerated the hypersensitive response. Recombinant APR134, CML42, and CML43 proteins all bind Ca2+in vitro. Collectively, our data support a role for CML43, and APR134 as important mediators of Ca2+-dependent signals during the plant immune response to bacterial pathogens.


Arabidopsis calcium calmodulin plant defense response tomato 





CaM-binding proteins




virus-induced gene silencing


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Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Chiasson
    • 1
  • Sophia K. Ekengren
    • 2
  • Gregory B. Martin
    • 2
    • 3
  • Stephanie L. Dobney
    • 1
  • Wayne A. Snedden
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of BiologyQueen’s UniversityKingstonCanada
  2. 2.Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant ResearchIthacaUSA
  3. 3.Department of Plant PathologyCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

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