Glycerol-3-phosphate levels are associated with basal resistance to the hemibiotrophic fungus Colletotrichum higginsianum in arabidopsis

Bidisha Chanda, Srivathsa C. Venugopal, Saurabh Kulshrestha, Duroy A. Navarre, Bruce Downie, Lisa Vaillancourt, Aardra Kachroo, Pradeep Kachroo

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72 Scopus citations


Glycerol-3-phosphate (G3P) is an important component of carbohydrate and lipid metabolic processes. In this article, we provide evidence that G3P levels in plants are associated with defense to a hemibiotrophic fungal pathogen Colletotrichum higginsianum. Inoculation of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) with C. higginsianum was correlated with an increase in G3P levels and a concomitant decrease in glycerol levels in the host. Plants impaired in utilization of plastidial G3P (act1) accumulated elevated levels of pathogen-induced G3P and displayed enhanced resistance. Furthermore, overexpression of the host GLY1 gene, which encodes a G3P dehydrogenase (G3Pdh), conferred enhanced resistance. In contrast, the gly1 mutant accumulated reduced levels of G3P after pathogen inoculation and showed enhanced susceptibility to C. higginsianum. Unlike gly1, a mutation in a cytosolic isoform of G3Pdh did not alter basal resistance to C. higginsianum. Furthermore, act1 gly1 double-mutant plants were as susceptible as the gly1 plants. Increased resistance or susceptibility of act1 and gly1 plants to C. higginsianum, respectively, was not due to effects of these mutations on salicylic acid- or ethylene-mediated defense pathways. The act1 mutation restored a wild-type-like response in camalexin-deficient pad3 plants, which were hypersusceptible to C. higginsianum. These data suggest that G3P-associated resistance to C. higginsianum occurs independently or downstream of the camalexin pathway. Together, these results suggest a novel and specific link between G3P metabolism and plant defense.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2017-2029
Number of pages13
JournalPlant Physiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science


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