Induction of defense response against Karnal bunt (KB) by suppressing the pathogenesis was observed upon exogenous application of jasmonic acid (JA) as evident from decrease in the coefficient of infection and overall response value in both susceptible and resistant varieties of wheat. The ultra-structural changes during disease progression showed the signs of programmed cell death (PCD). However, JA strengthened the defense barrier by enhancing the lignifications of cell walls as observed in spikes of both varieties by histochemical analysis. Compared to the plants inoculated with pathogen alone, plants of resistant line (RJP) first treated with JA followed by inoculation with pathogen showed more lignifications and extracellular deposition of other metabolites on cells, which is supposed to prevent mycelial invasions. Contrary to this, susceptible (SJP) lines also showed lignifications but the invasion was more compared to resistant line. Induction of protease activity was higher in resistant variety than its corresponding susceptible variety. The protease activity induced during the colonization of the pathogen and its proliferation inside the host system gets inhibited by JA treatment as demonstrated by the quantitative and in-gel protease assay. The results indicate the role of JA signalling in inhibiting the proteases due to expression of certain protease inhibitor genes. SDS-PAGE analysis shows differential gene expression through induction and/or suppression of different proteins in wheat spikes of resistant and susceptible varieties under the influence of JA. Thus, exogenously applied JA provides the conditioning effect prior to the challenge of infection and induces defense against KB probably by maintaining a critical balance between proteases and protease inhibitors and/or coordinating induction of different families of new proteins.
Volume 46, 2021
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