Published on Tue Sep 14 2021

A screen for mutants deficient in coronatine-mediated suppression of root immunity identifies Arabidopsis SDA1 as a novel integrator of immunity and phytohormone signaling

Song, Y., Zhang, X.-C., Qiu, Y., Briggs, A., Millet, Y., Bartenstein, D., Mankiw, C., Cerulli, M. L., Bush, J., Adams, K. L., Diener, A. C., Ausubel, F. M., Haney, C. H.

Despite the importance of the root immune system in the interaction with rhizosphere microbes, the majority of genetic screens for immunity regulators have been performed in leaves. A previous screen identified 27 hsm (hormone-mediated suppression of MAMP-triggered immunity) mutants that are impaired in jasmonic acid (JA)-mediated suppression of pattern-triggered immunity (PTI) in roots. Here we characterized 16 of the hsm mutants that retain JA sensitivity and are potential negative regulators of root immunity. We found that the majority of hsm mutants show enhanced resistance to Fusarium, a root fungal pathogen; however, only a subset are more resistant to a foliar pathogen. Surprisingly, 12 of 16 hsm mutants are also impaired in abscisic acid (ABA)-mediated suppression of PTI, suggesting a largely shared pathway between JA- and ABA-mediated immune suppression in roots. Although all hsm mutants are insensitive to JA-mediated suppression of root immunity, hsm4 shows hypersensitivity to JA-mediated root growth inhibition and JA-induced gene expression. Consistently, hsm4 is more resistant to leaf pathogens, suggesting that HSM4 is a negative regulator of both root and leaf immunity. Hsm4 was mapped to a mutation in a conserved ARM-repeat protein homologous to yeast SDA1, which has been reported to regulate 60S ribosome biogenesis. As translational reprogramming is a critical layer of immune regulation, this work suggests that AtSDA1 is a novel negative translational regulator of immunity. Additionally, a comprehensive characterization of all 16 hsm mutants provides a genetic toolkit to identify novel mechanisms that regulate root immunity.