Plant Pathology Department


Date of this Version



Palmer, N.A.; Alvarez, S.; Naldrett, M.J.; Muhle, A.; Sarath, G.; Edmé, S.J.; Tatineni, S.; Mitchell, R.B.; Yuen, G. Dynamic Reconfiguration of Switchgrass Proteomes in Response to Rust (Puccinia novopanici) Infection. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24, 14630. ijms241914630


Open access.


Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) can be infected by the rust pathogen (Puccinia novopanici) and results in lowering biomass yields and quality. Label-free quantitative proteomics was conducted on leaf extracts harvested from non-infected and infected plants from a susceptible cultivar (Summer) at 7, 11, and 18 days after inoculation (DAI) to follow the progression of disease and evaluate any plant compensatory mechanisms to infection. Some pustules were evident at 7 DAI, and their numbers increased with time. However, fungal DNA loads did not appreciably change over the course of this experiment in the infected plants. In total, 3830 proteins were identified at 1% false discovery rate, with 3632 mapped to the switchgrass proteome and 198 proteins mapped to different Puccinia proteomes. Across all comparisons, 1825 differentially accumulated switchgrass proteins were identified and subjected to a STRING analysis using Arabidopsis (A. thaliana L.) orthologs to deduce switchgrass cellular pathways impacted by rust infection. Proteins associated with plastid functions and primary metabolism were diminished in infected Summer plants at all harvest dates, whereas proteins associated with immunity, chaperone functions, and phenylpropanoid biosynthesis were significantly enriched. At 18 DAI, 1105 and 151 proteins were significantly enriched or diminished, respectively. Many of the enriched proteins were associated with mitigation of cellular stress and defense.