Innate immunity in plants is manifested by a complex array of antimicrobial processes that includes induction of sets of pathogenesis-related (PR) proteins. The availability of genomic data has made clear that each PR-protein family in a species is represented by several genes. Microarray data in public databases show that in most families, including the PR-5 family surveyed here, the expression of only few family members is defense associated. Genetic studies show that depending on their nutrient acquisition strategy, pathogens induce distinct but overlapping sets of PR genes, suggesting a connection to energy or resource allocation. PR-5 proteins have a clearly recognizable structure that is referred to as the thaumatin (THN) domain, which can be overlapped with mammalian Complement 1q-tumor necrosis factor (C1q-TNF) domains such as that of the mammalian hormone adiponectin. The occurrence of THN domain proteins is widespread. Similarities between THN domain proteins and mammalian C1q-TNF family proteins include their ligands and their subcellular locations. Osmotin (tobacco PR-5c) regulates energy balance signaling in mammalian cells by interaction with adiponectin receptors by a pathway that shares components with plant energy and stress signaling pathways. These data suggest additional roles for PR-5 proteins, as scaffolds and/or in signaling, particularly in regulating energy balance.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Plant Science