Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.393, No.1, 38-44, 2010
A thaumatin-like protein gene involved in cotton fiber secondary cell wall development enhances resistance against Verticillium dahliae and other stresses in transgenic tobacco
For the first time, a sea-island cotton (Gossypium barbadense L.) thaumatin-like protein gene (GbTLP1) with a potential role in secondary cell wall development has been overexpressed in tobacco to elucidate its function. The presence of the transgene was verified by Southern blotting and higher expression levels of GbTLP1 in transgenic tobacco plants were revealed by reverse-transcription and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction analyses. Transgenic plants with constitutively higher expression of the GbTLP1 showed enhanced resistance against different stress agents, particularly, its performance against Verticillium dahliae was exceptional. Transgenic tobacco plants also exhibited considerable resistance against Fusarium oxysporum and some abiotic stresses including salinity and drought. In this experiment, transgenic plants without GbTLP1 expression were also used as controls, which behaved similar to non-transgenic control plants. Overexpression of GbTLP1 had no significant deleterious effect on plant growth except that flowering was delayed for 3-5 weeks. The apparent pleiotropic effect of this novel gene has given us insight to the plant defense mechanism. (C) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.