Control of the Response to Biotic Stresses

  • Issei Kobayashi
  • Yuhko Kobayashi
Part of the Plant Cell Monographs book series (CELLMONO, volume 11)


The cytoskeletal network of plant cells is a dynamic structure, changes in whose organization respond to external stimuli. An attack of pathogenic microbes represents an external stress that seriously threatens plant survival. Recently, it has been found that cytoskeletal elements, such as microtubules and microfilaments, are involved in plant defence reactions, especially in response to fungal penetration. Tubulin and actin inhibitors suppress the polarization of plant defence-related responses, such as massive cytoplasmic aggregation, deposition of papillae and accumulation of autofluorescent compounds at the sites of fungal penetration. Simultaneously, these inhibitors allow non-pathogenic fungi to penetrate successfully into non-host plants. Thus, microtubules and microfilaments, through the temporal and spatial regulation of molecules and/or organelles in the host cell, seem to control resistance responses against attempts of fungal penetration. On the other hand, plant cytoskeletal elements seem to play a critical role in the cell-to-cell spread of plant pathogenic viruses. In the tobacco mosaic virus, the movement protein P30 forms filaments that colocalize primarily with MTs. This association of P30 with cytoskeletal elements may play a critical role in intracellular transport of the P30-viral RNA complex through the cytoplasm to and possibly through plasmodesmata. These findings strongly suggest that the cytoskeleton plays a central role in both plant defence mechanisms and in the pathogenicity of microbes. The possibility of enhancing plant resistance to pathogens via an artificial manipulation of cytoskeletal elements will be discussed.


Tobacco Mosaic Virus Movement Protein Cytoskeletal Element Fungal Penetration Size Exclusion Limit 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Issei Kobayashi
    • 1
  • Yuhko Kobayashi
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory of Plant Pathology, Faculty of BioresourcesMie UniversityMieJapan
  2. 2.Center for Molecular Biology and GeneticsMie UniversityMieJapan

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