The Plant Pathology Journal 2011;27(3):225-231.
Published online September 30, 2011.
Proteasome Inhibitors Affect Appressorium Formation and Pathogenicity of the Rice Blast Fungus, Magnaporthe oryzae
Y Iming Wang, Sang Gon Kim, Jing Ni Wu, Seok Yu, Kyu Young Kang, Sun Tae Kim
Previously, we identified the 20S proteasome α-subunit of Magnaporthe oryzae (M. oryzae) induced during appressorium formation, and detected an increase in multiple protein ubiquitination during the early appressorium formation process (Kim et al., 2004). In this study, we further attempted to determine whether the proteasome is involved in the appressorium formation of M. oryzae both in vitro and in planta, using proteasome inhibitors. A significant increase in 20S proteasome during fungal germination and appressorium formation was observed using Western blot analysis with 20S proteasome antibody, demonstrating that proteasomemediated protein degradation was involved in appressorium formation. Pharmacological analysis using proteasome inhibitors, MG-132, proteasome inhibitor I (PI) and proteasome inhibitor II (PII) revealed that germination and appressorium formation were delayed for 4 to 6 h on rice leaf wax-coated plates. Similarly, the treatment of proteasome inhibitors with fungal conidia on the rice leaf surface delayed appressorium formation and host infection processes as well. Additionally, fungal pathogenicity was strongly reduced at 4 days` postfungal infection. These data indicated that the fungal 20S proteasome might be involved in the pathogenicity of M. oryzae by the suppression of germination and appressorium formation.
Key Words: Appressorium formation, Magnaporthe oryzae, Pathogenicity, Proteasome inhibitor, 20S proteasome

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