Journal of General Plant Pathology

, Volume 84, Issue 3, pp 176–188 | Cite as

The DNA damage signal transducer ortholog Mop53BP1 is required for proper appressorium differentiation and pathogenicity in Pyricularia oryzae

  • Andre Ohara
  • Yui Tashika
  • Ayumi Abe
  • Teruo Sone
Fungal Diseases


Appressorium differentiation, one of the most important steps in pathogenesis by the rice blast fungus, Pyricularia oryzae, is strongly coordinated with the cell cycle. In this study, we identified an ortholog gene of 53BP1, which encodes a signal transducer protein that participates in G2-M cell cycle checkpoint in higher eukaryotes, in the genome of P. oryzae and characterized the phenotype of deletion and overexpression mutants. Deletion mutants showed no significant deficiency in vegetative growth compared to wild-type and complemented strains, even on the media containing DNA-damaging agents. However, these null mutants had abnormal appressoria and formed more appressoria per conidium than in the wild type and were unable to penetrate the epidermis of rice leaves. eGFP-fused Mop53BP1 and qRT-PCR analyses revealed that Mop53BP1 is expressed during the first hours of appressorium formation. In addition, in overexpression mutants, Mop53BP1 localized to nuclei during all stages of appressorium maturation and penetration, and the mutants were resistant to the microtubule inhibitor benomyl, suggesting that Mop53BP1 is nuclear protein and may have some role related to microtubules.


53BP1 Appressorium Rice blast Benomyl Cell cycle 



The authors thank the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) for granting a scholarship to AO.

Supplementary material

10327_2018_780_MOESM1_ESM.pptx (343 kb)
Fig S1. 53BP1 in Pyricularia oryzae. ClustalW comparing C-terminal BRCT domains (amino acid residue 713-963 in Mop53BP1). Asterisks (*) indicate positions that have a single, fully conserved residue; colons (:) indicate conservation between groups wiht strongly similar properties; and dots (.) indicate conservation between groups with weakly similar properties (PPTX 343 KB)


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Copyright information

© The Phytopathological Society of Japan and Springer Japan KK, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Agriculture and Research Faculty of AgricultureHokkaido UniversitySapporoJapan

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