Plant Science Innovation, Center for


Date of this Version



Liu, H.; Nwafor, C.C.; Piao, Y.; Li, X.; Zhan, Z.; Piao, Z. Identification and Characterization of Circular RNAs in Brassica rapa in Response to Plasmodiophora brassicae. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23, 5369. ijms23105369


Copyright: © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license


Plasmodiophora brassicae is a soil-borne pathogen that attacks the roots of cruciferous plants and causes clubroot disease. CircRNAs are noncoding RNAs, widely existing in plant and animal species. Although knowledge of circRNAs has been updated continuously and rapidly, information about circRNAs in the regulation of clubroot disease resistance is extremely limited in Brassica rapa. Here, Chinese cabbage (BJN 222) containing clubroot resistance genes (CRa) against P. brassicae Pb4 was susceptible to PbE. To investigate the mechanism of cicRNAs responsible for clubroot disease resistance in B. rapa, circRNA-seq was performed with roots of ‘BJN 222’ at 0, 8, and 23 days postinoculated (dpi) with Pb4 and PbE. A total of 231 differentially expressed circRNAs were identified between the groups. Based on the differentially expressed circRNAs, the circRNA–miRNA–mRNA network was constructed using the target genes directly or indirectly related to plant resistance. Upregulated novel_circ_000495 suppressed the expression of miR5656-y, leading to the upregulation of Bra026508, which might cause plant resistance. Our results provide new insights into clubroot resistance mechanisms and lay a foundation for further studies exploring complex gene regulation networks in B. rapa.