Herbaspirillum rubrisubalbicans as a phytopathogenic model to study the immune system of Sorghum bicolor

Thalita Regina Tuleski, Jennifer Kimball, Fernanda P. Do Amaral, Tomas P. Pereira, Michelle Zibetti Tadra-Sfeir, Fabio De Oliveira Pedrosa, Emanuel Maltempi De Souza, Peter Balint-Kurti, Rose Adele Monteiro, Gary Stacey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Herbaspirillum rubrisubalbicans is the causal agent of red stripe disease (RSD) and mottle stripe disease of sorghum and sugarcane, respectively. In all, 63 genotypes of Sorghum bicolor were inoculated with H. rubrisubalbicans, with 59 showing RSD symptoms. Quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis in a recombinant inbred line (RIL) population identified several QTL associated with variation in resistance to RSD. RNA sequencing analysis identified a number of genes whose transcript levels were differentially regulated during H. rubrisubalbicans infection. Among those genes that responded to H. rubrisubalbicans inoculation were many involved in plant-pathogen interactions such as leucine-rich repeat receptors, mitogen-activated protein kinase 1, calcium-binding proteins, transcriptional factors (ethylene-responsive element binding factor), and callose synthase. Pretreatment of sorghum leaves with the pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP) molecules flg22 and chitooctaose provided protection against subsequent challenge with the pathogen, suggesting that PAMP-triggered immunity plays an important role in the sorghum immunity response. These data present baseline information for the use of the genetically tractable H. rubrisubalbicans-sorghum pathosystem for the study of innate immunity and disease resistance in this important grain and bioenergy crop. Information gained from the use of this system is likely to be informative for other monocots, including those more intractable for experimental study (e.g., sugarcane).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)235-246
Number of pages12
JournalMolecular Plant-Microbe Interactions
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
†Corresponding authors: G, Stacey; staceyg@missouri.edu; and R. A. Monteiro; roseadele@ufpr.br Funding: U.S. Department of Energy (grant number DE-SC0014116) to P. Balint-Kurti and G. Stacey and the National Institute of Science and Technology of Biological Nitrogen Fixation (INCT-BNF).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The American Phytopathological Society.


  • Bacterial pathogenesis
  • Defense signaling pathways
  • Elicitors
  • Endophytes
  • Herbaspirillum rubrisubalbicans
  • MAMPs
  • PAMPs
  • Pathosystem
  • Plant-bacteria interaction
  • Resistance factors
  • Sorghum bicolor

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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