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Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology
Volume 103, 2018, Pages: 130-136

Enhanced biocontrol activity of cellulase from Trichoderma harzianum against Fusarium graminearum through activation of defense-related genes in maize

Kandasamy Saravanakumar, Kai Dou, Zhixiang Lu, Xinhua Wang, Yaqian Li, Jie Chen

School of Agriculture and Biology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, PR China.


This work reports the role of cellulase from Trichoderma harzianum strain Th22 in stimulation of 2,4-Dihydroxy-7-methoxy-2H-1,4-benzoxazin-3(4H)-one (DIMBOA) and defense-related gene expressions in maize root against deoxynivalenol producing Fusarium graminearum(FG) by in vitro, in planta and virtual molecular modeling experiments. The results indicated that cellulase genes such as Thph1&2 were involved in biocontrol of FG and its related plant diseases through the activation of JA, ET, SAR, DIMBOA and PII related gene expressions in the maize root as evidenced by qRT-PCR and HPLC analysis. Further, the inhibitory assay also confirms that DIMBOA inhibited the growth of FG at concentrations dependent manner. Furthermore, virtual studies revealed that DIMBOA from maize root metabolizes or inhibit the active site of pathogenicity (FgSwi6) and mycotoxin (FgAtf1) related protein in FG. Finally, this work concluded that cellulase genes Thph1 and Thph2 from T. harzianum was not only limited to control of foliar disease but also involved in biocontrol of Fusarium stalk rot.

Graphical abstract

Keywords: Biocontrol, Deoxynivalenol, Pathogenicity, Trichoderma, Trichothecene.

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