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BMC Plant Biol ; 21(1): 402, 2021 Sep 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34470613


BACKGROUND: Plant-parasitic nematodes and herbivorous insects have a significant negative impact on global crop production. A successful approach to protect crops from these pests is the in planta expression of nematotoxic or entomotoxic proteins such as crystal proteins from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) or plant lectins. However, the efficacy of this approach is threatened by emergence of resistance in nematode and insect populations to these proteins. To solve this problem, novel nematotoxic and entomotoxic proteins are needed. During the last two decades, several cytoplasmic lectins from mushrooms with nematicidal and insecticidal activity have been characterized. In this study, we tested the potential of Marasmius oreades agglutinin (MOA) to furnish Arabidopsis plants with resistance towards three economically important crop pests: the two plant-parasitic nematodes Heterodera schachtii and Meloidogyne incognita and the herbivorous diamondback moth Plutella xylostella. RESULTS: The expression of MOA does not affect plant growth under axenic conditions which is an essential parameter in the engineering of genetically modified crops. The transgenic Arabidopsis lines showed nearly complete resistance to H. schachtii, in that the number of female and male nematodes per cm root was reduced by 86-91 % and 43-93 % compared to WT, respectively. M. incognita proved to be less susceptible to the MOA protein in that 18-25 % and 26-35 % less galls and nematode egg masses, respectively, were observed in the transgenic lines. Larvae of the herbivorous P. xylostella foraging on MOA-expression lines showed a lower relative mass gain (22-38 %) and survival rate (15-24 %) than those feeding on WT plants. CONCLUSIONS: The results of our in planta experiments reveal a robust nematicidal and insecticidal activity of the fungal lectin MOA against important agricultural pests which may be exploited for crop protection.

Aglutininas/farmacologia , Arabidopsis/parasitologia , Herbivoria , Marasmius/química , Nematoides/fisiologia , Aglutininas/química , Animais , Proteínas de Arabidopsis/genética , Proteínas de Arabidopsis/metabolismo , Regulação da Expressão Gênica de Plantas/efeitos dos fármacos , Mariposas/fisiologia , Doenças das Plantas/prevenção & controle , Plantas Geneticamente Modificadas
PLoS One ; 16(7): e0254549, 2021.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34260649


Thionins are antimicrobial peptides found only in plants. They are first produced as preproproteins and then processed to yield the usually 5 kDa, basic thionin peptide with three or four disulfide bridges. So far, thionins had only been found in some plant families of angiosperms. The One Thousand Plant Transcriptomes Initiative (1KP project) has sequenced the transcriptomes of more than 1000 plant species. We have used these data to search for new thionin sequences which gave 225 hits. After removing doublets these resulted in 133 new thionins. No sequences were found in algae and mosses. The phylogenetically earliest hits were from Selaginella species and from conifers. Many hits were from angiosperm plant families which were previously not known to contain thionins. A large gene family for thionins was found in Papaver. We isolated a genomic clone from Papaver somniferum which confirmed the general genomic structure with two small introns within the acidic domain. We also expressed the thionin encoded by the genomic clone and found that it had antimicrobial activity in vitro, especially against fungi. Previously, we had grouped thionins into four classes. The new data reported here led us to revise this classification. We now recognize only class 1 thionins with eight cysteine residues and class 2 thionins with six cysteine residues. The different variants that we found (and also previously known variants) can all be traced back to one of these two classes. Some of the variants had an uneven number of cysteine residues and it is not clear at the moment what that means for their threedimensional structure.

Sci Rep ; 11(1): 5188, 2021 Mar 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33664327


Inflammatory bowel disease is a group of conditions with rising incidence caused by genetic and environmental factors including diet. The chelator ethylenediaminetetraacetate (EDTA) is widely used by the food and pharmaceutical industry among numerous other applications, leading to a considerable environmental exposure. Numerous safety studies in healthy animals have revealed no relevant toxicity by EDTA. Here we show that, in the presence of intestinal inflammation, EDTA is surprisingly capable of massively exacerbating inflammation and even inducing colorectal carcinogenesis at doses that are presumed to be safe. This toxicity is evident in two biologically different mouse models of inflammatory bowel disease, the AOM/DSS and the IL10-/- model. The mechanism of this effect may be attributed to disruption of intercellular contacts as demonstrated by in vivo confocal endomicroscopy, electron microscopy and cell culture studies. Our findings add EDTA to the list of food additives that might be detrimental in the presence of intestinal inflammation, but the toxicity of which may have been missed by regulatory safety testing procedures that utilize only healthy models. We conclude that the current use of EDTA especially in food and pharmaceuticals should be reconsidered. Moreover, we suggest that intestinal inflammatory models should be implemented in the testing of food additives to account for the exposure of this primary organ to environmental and dietary stress.

Methods Protoc ; 3(2)2020 May 08.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32397084


A method for the positive selection of specific antibodies for target proteins expressed as fusion proteins for the production of antiserum is presented. As proof of concept, the fusion protein FLAG::His::GFP::His::FLAG was expressed in Escherichia coli, purified, and used for the immunization of rabbits. The obtained serum was precleared via protein A affinity. A CusF::FLAG fusion protein was expressed in the periplasm of E. coli and purified. GFP without tags was also expressed in E. coli and purified via organic extraction. These proteins were then coupled to NHS-activated sepharose and used for the positive selection of Anti-GFP and Anti-FLAG antibodies. The obtained sera were tested for their specificity against different protein samples and fusion proteins in Western blots. A high specificity of the antibodies could be achieved by a single affinity chromatography step. In general, we advise to express the target protein with different tags and in different E. coli compartments for antibody production and affinity chromatography.

BMC Genomics ; 16: 326, 2015 Apr 20.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25909478


BACKGROUND: Trichoderma reesei is the main industrial source of cellulases and hemicellulases required for the hydrolysis of biomass to simple sugars, which can then be used in the production of biofuels and biorefineries. The highly productive strains in use today were generated by classical mutagenesis. As byproducts of this procedure, mutants were generated that turned out to be unable to produce cellulases. In order to identify the mutations responsible for this inability, we sequenced the genome of one of these strains, QM9136, and compared it to that of its progenitor T. reesei QM6a. RESULTS: In QM9136, we detected a surprisingly low number of mutagenic events in the promoter and coding regions of genes, i.e. only eight indels and six single nucleotide variants. One of these indels led to a frame-shift in the Zn2Cys6 transcription factor XYR1, the general regulator of cellulase and xylanase expression, and resulted in its C-terminal truncation by 140 amino acids. Retransformation of strain QM9136 with the wild-type xyr1 allele fully recovered the ability to produce cellulases, and is thus the reason for the cellulase-negative phenotype. Introduction of an engineered xyr1 allele containing the truncating point mutation into the moderate producer T. reesei QM9414 rendered this strain also cellulase-negative. The correspondingly truncated XYR1 protein was still able to enter the nucleus, but failed to be expressed over the basal constitutive level. CONCLUSION: The missing 140 C-terminal amino acids of XYR1 are therefore responsible for its previously observed auto-regulation which is essential for cellulases to be expressed. Our data present a working example of the use of genome sequencing leading to a functional explanation of the QM9136 cellulase-negative phenotype.

Celulase/genética , Proteínas Fúngicas/genética , Genoma Fúngico , Fatores de Transcrição/genética , Trichoderma/enzimologia , Trichoderma/genética , Alelos , Núcleo Celular/metabolismo , Celulase/metabolismo , Proteínas Fúngicas/química , Proteínas Fúngicas/metabolismo , Genótipo , Sequenciamento de Nucleotídeos em Larga Escala , Mutação , Fenótipo , Polimorfismo de Nucleotídeo Único , Estrutura Terciária de Proteína , Proteínas Recombinantes de Fusão/biossíntese , Proteínas Recombinantes de Fusão/genética , Análise de Sequência de DNA , Fatores de Transcrição/química , Fatores de Transcrição/metabolismo