The effect of UV-B on the plant-pathogen interaction


Team: Zheng Zhou, Dirk Schenke

Supported by Chinese Scholarship Council (CSC), 2015-2019    



UV-B induced flavonoids play not only a role in protection against this abiotic stress, but can also impact the plant response in various biotic interactions. Investigating the effect of UV-B on the pathogen defense of Arabidopsis wildtype and flavonoid-deficient mutants against virulent and avirulent Pseudomonas syringae bacterial strains may help to address the question if UV-B can also impact biotic stress via enhanced production of flavonoids. Depending on observable differences between UV-B treated and untreated plants and between leaf and root material we will investigate UV-B dependent gene expression from leaf, stem and root. Thus, this research will be conducted with B. napus allowing separation of the three tissues. Furthermore, two TFs play a prominent role in flavonoid production: MYB111, which is activated in leaves and MYB12 (activated in roots) and we suppose these are distinctly involved in abiotic or biotic stress responses, respectively. Small RNAs, which are cell-to-cell mobile, could serve as long distance signals allowing transmission of regulatory signals from leaf to root.


  • Transfer of the system from Arabidopsis to oilseed rape


  • Identification of the transmittable UV-B signal (sRNAs?) and its effect on gene regulation


  • Investigation of the effect of UV-B on bacterial and fungal pathogens


  • Potential use in practice