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Wasternack, C.; Termination in Jasmonate Signaling by MYC2 and MTBs Trends Plant Sci. 24, 667-669, (2019) DOI: 10.1016/j.tplants.2019.06.001

Jasmonic acid (JA) signaling can be switched off by metabolism of JA. The master regulator MYC2, interacting with MED25, has been shown to be deactivated by the bHLH transcription factors MTB1, MTB2, and MTB3. An autoregulatory negative feedback loop has been proposed for this termination in JA signaling.

Wasternack, C.; New Light on Local and Systemic Wound Signaling Trends Plant Sci. 24, 102-105, (2019) DOI: 10.1016/j.tplants.2018.11.009

Electric signaling and Ca2+ waves were discussed to occur in systemic wound responses. Two new overlapping scenarios were identified: (i) membrane depolarization in two special cell types followed by an increase in systemic cytoplasmic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]cyt), and (ii) glutamate sensed by GLUTAMATE RECEPTOR LIKE proteins and followed by Ca2+-based defense in distal leaves.

Wasternack, C.; Feussner, I.; The Oxylipin Pathways: Biochemistry and Function Annu. Rev. Plant Biol. 69, 363-386, (2018) DOI: 10.1146/annurev-arplant-042817-040440

Plant oxylipins form a constantly growing group of signaling molecules that comprise oxygenated fatty acids and metabolites derived therefrom. In the last decade, the understanding of biosynthesis, metabolism, and action of oxylipins, especially jasmonates, has dramatically improved. Additional mechanistic insights into the action of enzymes and insights into signaling pathways have been deepened for jasmonates. For other oxylipins, such as the hydroxy fatty acids, individual signaling properties and cross talk between different oxylipins or even with additional phytohormones have recently been described. This review summarizes recent understanding of the biosynthesis, regulation, and function of oxylipins.

Wasternack, C.; Hause, B.; A Bypass in Jasmonate Biosynthesis – the OPR3-independent Formation Trends Plant Sci. 23, 276-279, (2018) DOI: 10.1016/j.tplants.2018.02.011

For the first time in 25 years, a new pathway for biosynthesis of jasmonic acid (JA) has been identified. JA production takes place via 12-oxo-phytodienoic acid (OPDA) including reduction by OPDA reductases (OPRs). A loss-of-function allele, opr3-3, revealed an OPR3-independent pathway converting OPDA to JA.

Bosch, M.; Wright, L. P.; Gershenzon, J.; Wasternack, C.; Hause, B.; Schaller, A.; Stintzi, A.; Jasmonic Acid and Its Precursor 12-Oxophytodienoic Acid Control Different Aspects of Constitutive and Induced Herbivore Defenses in Tomato Plant Physiol. 166, 396-410, (2014) DOI: 10.1104/pp.114.237388

The jasmonate family of growth regulators includes the isoleucine (Ile) conjugate of jasmonic acid (JA-Ile) and its biosynthetic precursor 12-oxophytodienoic acid (OPDA) as signaling molecules. To assess the relative contribution of JA/JA-Ile and OPDA to insect resistance in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum), we silenced the expression of OPDA reductase3 (OPR3) by RNA interference (RNAi). Consistent with a block in the biosynthetic pathway downstream of OPDA, OPR3-RNAi plants contained wild-type levels of OPDA but failed to accumulate JA or JA-Ile after wounding. JA/JA-Ile deficiency in OPR3-RNAi plants resulted in reduced trichome formation and impaired monoterpene and sesquiterpene production. The loss of these JA/JA-Ile -dependent defense traits rendered them more attractive to the specialist herbivore Manduca sexta with respect to feeding and oviposition. Oviposition preference resulted from reduced levels of repellant monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes. Feeding preference, on the other hand, was caused by increased production of cis-3-hexenal acting as a feeding stimulant for M. sexta larvae in OPR3-RNAi plants. Despite impaired constitutive defenses and increased palatability of OPR3-RNAi leaves, larval development was indistinguishable on OPR3-RNAi and wild-type plants, and was much delayed compared with development on the jasmonic acid-insensitive1 (jai1) mutant. Apparently, signaling through JAI1, the tomato ortholog of the ubiquitin ligase CORONATINE INSENSITIVE1 in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), is required for defense, whereas the conversion of OPDA to JA/JA-Ile is not. Comparing the signaling activities of OPDA and JA/JA-Ile, we found that OPDA can substitute for JA/JA-Ile in the local induction of defense gene expression, but the production of JA/JA-Ile is required for a systemic response.

Goetz, S.; Hellwege, A.; Stenzel, I.; Kutter, C.; Hauptmann, V.; Forner, S.; McCaig, B.; Hause, G.; Miersch, O.; Wasternack, C.; Hause, B.; Role of cis-12-Oxo-Phytodienoic Acid in Tomato Embryo Development Plant Physiol. 158, 1715-1727, (2012) DOI: 10.1104/pp.111.192658

Oxylipins including jasmonates are signaling compounds in plant growth, development, and responses to biotic and abiotic stresses. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) most mutants affected in jasmonic acid (JA) biosynthesis and signaling are male sterile, whereas the JA-insensitive tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) mutant jai1 is female sterile. The diminished seed formation in jai1 together with the ovule-specific accumulation of the JA biosynthesis enzyme allene oxide cyclase (AOC), which correlates with elevated levels of JAs, suggest a role of oxylipins in tomato flower/seed development. Here, we show that 35S::SlAOC-RNAi lines with strongly reduced AOC in ovules exhibited reduced seed set similarly to the jai1 plants. Investigation of embryo development of wild-type tomato plants showed preferential occurrence of AOC promoter activity and AOC protein accumulation in the developing seed coat and the embryo, whereas 12-oxo-phytodienoic acid (OPDA) was the dominant oxylipin occurring nearly exclusively in the seed coat tissues. The OPDA- and JA-deficient mutant spr2 was delayed in embryo development and showed an increased programmed cell death in the developing seed coat and endosperm. In contrast, the mutant acx1a, which accumulates preferentially OPDA and residual amount of JA, developed embryos similar to the wild type, suggesting a role of OPDA in embryo development. Activity of the residual amount of JA in the acx1a mutant is highly improbable since the known reproductive phenotype of the JA-insensitive mutant jai1 could be rescued by wound-induced formation of OPDA. These data suggest a role of OPDA or an OPDA-related compound for proper embryo development possibly by regulating carbohydrate supply and detoxification.

Weigelt, K.; Küster, H.; Rutten, T.; Fait, A.; Fernie, A. R.; Miersch, O.; Wasternack, C.; Emery, R. J. N.; Desel, C.; Hosein, F.; Müller, M.; Saalbach, I.; Weber, H.; ADP-Glucose Pyrophosphorylase-Deficient Pea Embryos Reveal Specific Transcriptional and Metabolic Changes of Carbon-Nitrogen Metabolism and Stress Responses Plant Physiol. 149, 395-411, (2009) DOI: 10.1104/pp.108.129940

We present a comprehensive analysis of ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylase (AGP)-repressed pea (Pisum sativum) seeds using transcript and metabolite profiling to monitor the effects that reduced carbon flow into starch has on carbon-nitrogen metabolism and related pathways. Changed patterns of transcripts and metabolites suggest that AGP repression causes sugar accumulation and stimulates carbohydrate oxidation via glycolysis, tricarboxylic acid cycle, and mitochondrial respiration. Enhanced provision of precursors such as acetyl-coenzyme A and organic acids apparently support other pathways and activate amino acid and storage protein biosynthesis as well as pathways fed by cytosolic acetyl-coenzyme A, such as cysteine biosynthesis and fatty acid elongation/metabolism. As a consequence, the resulting higher nitrogen (N) demand depletes transient N storage pools, specifically asparagine and arginine, and leads to N limitation. Moreover, increased sugar accumulation appears to stimulate cytokinin-mediated cell proliferation pathways. In addition, the deregulation of starch biosynthesis resulted in indirect changes, such as increased mitochondrial metabolism and osmotic stress. The combined effect of these changes is an enhanced generation of reactive oxygen species coupled with an up-regulation of energy-dissipating, reactive oxygen species protection, and defense genes. Transcriptional activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways and oxylipin synthesis indicates an additional activation of stress signaling pathways. AGP-repressed embryos contain higher levels of jasmonate derivatives; however, this increase is preferentially in nonactive forms. The results suggest that, although metabolic/osmotic alterations in iAGP pea seeds result in multiple stress responses, pea seeds have effective mechanisms to circumvent stress signaling under conditions in which excessive stress responses and/or cellular damage could prematurely initiate senescence or apoptosis.

Ederli, L.; Morettini, R.; Borgogni, A.; Wasternack, C.; Miersch, O.; Reale, L.; Ferranti, F.; Tosti, N.; Pasqualini, S.; Interaction between Nitric Oxide and Ethylene in the Induction of Alternative Oxidase in Ozone-Treated Tobacco Plants Plant Physiol. 142, 595-608, (2006) DOI: 10.1104/pp.106.085472

The higher plant mitochondrial electron transport chain contains, in addition to the cytochrome chain, an alternative pathway that terminates with a single homodimeric protein, the alternative oxidase (AOX). We recorded temporary inhibition of cytochrome capacity respiration and activation of AOX pathway capacity in tobacco plants (Nicotiana tabacum L. cv BelW3) fumigated with ozone (O3). The AOX1a gene was used as a molecular probe to investigate its regulation by signal molecules such as hydrogen peroxide, nitric oxide (NO), ethylene (ET), salicylic acid, and jasmonic acid (JA), all of them reported to be involved in the O3 response. Fumigation leads to accumulation of hydrogen peroxide in mitochondria and early accumulation of NO in leaf tissues. Although ET accumulation was high in leaf tissues 5 h after the start of O3 fumigation, it declined during the recovery period. There were no differences in the JA and 12-oxo-phytodienoic acid levels of treated and untreated plants. NO, JA, and ET induced AOX1a mRNA accumulation. Using pharmacological inhibition of ET and NO, we demonstrate that both NO- and ET-dependent pathways are required for O3-induced up-regulation of AOX1a. However, only NO is indispensable for the activation of AOX1a gene expression.

Mur, L. A.; Kenton, P.; Atzorn, R.; Miersch, O.; Wasternack, C.; The Outcomes of Concentration-Specific Interactions between Salicylate and Jasmonate Signaling Include Synergy, Antagonism, and Oxidative Stress Leading to Cell Death Plant Physiol. 140, 249-262, (2006) DOI: 10.1104/pp.105.072348

Salicylic acid (SA) has been proposed to antagonize jasmonic acid (JA) biosynthesis and signaling. We report, however, that in salicylate hydroxylase-expressing tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) plants, where SA levels were reduced, JA levels were not elevated during a hypersensitive response elicited by Pseudomonas syringae pv phaseolicola. The effects of cotreatment with various concentrations of SA and JA were assessed in tobacco and Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). These suggested that there was a transient synergistic enhancement in the expression of genes associated with either JA (PDF1.2 [defensin] and Thi1.2 [thionin]) or SA (PR1 [PR1a-β-glucuronidase in tobacco]) signaling when both signals were applied at low (typically 10–100 μm) concentrations. Antagonism was observed at more prolonged treatment times or at higher concentrations. Similar results were also observed when adding the JA precursor, α-linolenic acid with SA. Synergic effects on gene expression and plant stress were NPR1- and COI1-dependent, SA- and JA-signaling components, respectively. Electrolyte leakage and Evans blue staining indicated that application of higher concentrations of SA + JA induced plant stress or death and elicited the generation of apoplastic reactive oxygen species. This was indicated by enhancement of hydrogen peroxide-responsive AoPR10-β-glucuronidase expression, suppression of plant stress/death using catalase, and direct hydrogen peroxide measurements. Our data suggests that the outcomes of JA-SA interactions could be tailored to pathogen/pest attack by the relative concentration of each hormone.

O'Donnell, P. J.; Schmelz, E.; Block, A.; Miersch, O.; Wasternack, C.; Jones, J. B.; Klee, H. J.; Multiple Hormones Act Sequentially to Mediate a Susceptible Tomato Pathogen Defense Response Plant Physiol. 133, 1181-1189, (2003) DOI: 10.1104/pp.103.030379

Phytohormones regulate plant responses to a wide range of biotic and abiotic stresses. How a limited number of hormones differentially mediate individual stress responses is not understood. We have used one such response, the compatible interaction of tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) and Xanthomonas campestris pv vesicatoria (Xcv), to examine the interactions of jasmonic acid (JA), ethylene, and salicylic acid (SA). The role of JA was assessed using an antisense allene oxide cyclase transgenic line and the def1 mutant to suppress Xcv-induced biosynthesis of jasmonates. Xcv growth was limited in these lines as was subsequent disease symptom development. No increase in JA was detected before the onset of terminal necrosis. The lack of a detectable increase in JA may indicate that an oxylipin other than JA regulates basal resistance and symptom proliferation. Alternatively, there may be an increase in sensitivity to JA or related compounds following infection. Hormone measurements showed that the oxylipin signal must precede subsequent increases in ethylene and SA accumulation. Tomato thus actively regulates the Xcv-induced disease response via the sequential action of at least three hormones, promoting expansive cell death of its own tissue. This sequential action of jasmonate, ethylene, and SA in disease symptom development is different from the hormone interactions observed in many other plant-pathogen interactions.
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