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The role of photoprotection in defence of two wheat genotypes against Zymoseptoria tritici

Ajigboye, Olubukola O.; Jayaweera, Dasuni P.; Angelopoulou, Dimitra; Ruban, Alexander V.; Murchie, Erik H.; Pastor, Victoria; Summers, Richard; Ray, Rumiana V.

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Olubukola O. Ajigboye

Dasuni P. Jayaweera

Dimitra Angelopoulou

Alexander V. Ruban

Professor of Applied Plant Physiology

Victoria Pastor

Richard Summers

Professor of Plant Pathology


This study provides new insights into the role of photoprotection in preformed and induced defence of two wheat genotypes with contrasting phenotypes to infection by Zymoseptoria tritici. We investigated the mechanisms of the photoprotective response during early infection, including nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ), ?-carotene-derived xanthophylls, reactive oxygen species, and the phytohormones abscisic acid (ABA), jasmonic acid (JA), and salicylic acid (SA). Furthermore, we quantified the effects of pathogenesis on photosynthesis, stomatal control, and expression of plant defence molecular markers. The photoprotective mechanism of successful defence involved the qI component of NPQ leading to rapid down-regulation of photosystem II quantum yield and chlorophyll a:b, increased biosynthesis of the xanthophyll neoxanthin and ABA, and the expression of chloroplast-specific enzymes to engage in scavenging of O2??. Elevated ABA in the resistant genotype correlated with preformed leaf defence traits including low stomatal density, increased expression of wax biosynthesis, and lignification. Z. tritici exhibited reduced germination and branching on the resistant host genotype and hijacked stomatal control in both genotypes by enhancing stomatal sensitivity to light. Increased biosynthesis of JA and anthocyanins, in contrast to SA, were quantified in the incompatible interaction. Our results indicate that ABA and JA in antagonistic action to SA were associated with defence in the resistant genotype, Cougar, against Z. tritici.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 12, 2021
Online Publication Date May 7, 2021
Publication Date 2021-08
Deposit Date May 17, 2021
Publicly Available Date May 20, 2021
Journal Plant Pathology
Print ISSN 0032-0862
Electronic ISSN 1365-3059
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 70
Issue 6
Pages 1421-1435
Keywords Agronomy and Crop Science; Plant Science; Genetics; Horticulture
Public URL
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