Ectopic Expression of StERF94 Transcription Factor in Potato Plants Improved Resistance to Fusarium solani Infection
ERF proteins (ethylene-responsive factors), which belong to the AP2/ERF superfamily, play essential roles in plant development, growth, and response to abiotic and biotic constraints. In a previous study, we cloned a cDNA encoding the StERF94 factor from potato plants and the phylogenetic analyses showed that it belongs to group IX of the ERF family. Genes of this group are known to be involved in plant response to biotic stress. The StERF94 cDNA was overexpressed in transgenic potato plants and the resulting transgenic plants showed a high tolerance to salinity. In this study, we investigated the response of StERF94 transgenic plants to biotic stress by evaluating their resistance to Fusarium solani infection. A significant enhanced resistance to the fungus was noticed in the transgenic plants which displayed limited malondialdehyde and H2O2 production and increasing antioxidant enzyme activities. Our findings also revealed that overexpression of StERF94 in potato enhanced expression of relevant defense genes like those encoding PR proteins (pathogenesis related) which led to a protection against disease propagation and reduction of fungus development in plant tissues.
KeywordsPotato ERF Fusarium solani Transgenic plants
This work was financed by the ministry of High Education and Scientific Research Tunisia. We would like to thank doctor Anne-Lise for her help in English writing.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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