The transcriptional innate immune response to flg22. Interplay and overlap with Avr gene-dependent defense responses and bacterial pathogenesis

Lionel Navarro, Cyril Zipfel, Owen Rowland, Ingo Keller, Silke Robatzek, Thomas Boller, Jonathan D G Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

470 Citations (Scopus)


Animals and plants carry recognition systems to sense bacterial flagellin. Flagellin perception in Arabidopsis involves FLS2, a Leu-rich-repeat receptor kinase. We surveyed the early transcriptional response of Arabidopsis cell cultures and seedlings within 60 min of treatment with flg22, a peptide corresponding to the most conserved domain of flagellin. Using Affymetrix microarrays, approximately 3.0% of 8,200 genes displayed transcript level changes in flg22 elicited suspension cultures and seedlings. FLARE (Flagellin Rapidly Elicited) genes mostly encode signaling components, such as transcription factors, protein kinases/phosphatases, and proteins that regulate protein turnover. Approximately 80% of flg22-induced genes were also up-regulated in Arabidopsis seedlings treated with cycloheximide. This suggests that many FLARE genes are negatively regulated by rapidly turned-over repressor proteins. Twenty-one tobacco Avr9/Cf-9 rapidly elicited (ACRE) cDNA full-length sequences were used to search for their Arabidopsis orthologs (AtACRE). We identified either single or multiple putative orthologs for 17 ACRE genes. For 13 of these ACRE genes, at least one Arabidopsis ortholog was induced in flg22-elicited Arabidopsis suspension cells and seedlings. This result revealed a substantial overlap between the Arabidopsis flg22 response and the tobacco Avr9 race-specific defense response. We also compared FLARE gene sets and genes induced in basal or gene-for-gene interactions upon different Pseudomonas syringae treatments, and infer that Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato represses the flagellin-initiated defense response.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1113-1128
Number of pages16
JournalPlant Physiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2004


  • Arabidopsis
  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • Bacteria
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cycloheximide
  • Flagellin
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant
  • Immunity, Innate
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plant Diseases
  • Plant Proteins
  • Pseudomonas syringae
  • Tobacco
  • Transcription, Genetic

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