Date of this Version
Published in Virus Research 200 (2015), pp 30–34.
The capsid protein (CP) of turnip crinkle virus (TCV) is the elicitor of hypersensitive response (HR) and resistance mediated by the resistance protein HRT in the Di-17 ecotype of Arabidopsis. Here we identified the N-terminal 52-amino-acid R domain of TCV CP as the elicitor of HRT-dependent HR in Nicotiana benthamiana. Mutating this domain at position 6 (R6A), but not at positions 8 (R8A) or 14 (G14A), abolished HR in N. benthamiana. However, on Di-17 Arabidopsis leaves only R8A R domain elicited visible epidermal HR. When incorporated in infectious TCV RNAs, R8A and G14A mutations exerted dramatically different effects in Di-17 plants, as R8A caused systemic cell death whereas G14A led to complete restriction of the mutant virus. This continual spectrum of HR and resistance responses elicited by various R domain mutants suggests that the CP–HRT interaction could be perturbed by conformational changes in the R domain of TCV CP.