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Keywords:

  • Botrytis cinerea;
  • disease resistance;
  • ETHYLENE RESPONSE FACTOR (ERF);
  • ethylene signaling;
  • RELATED TO AP2 2 (RAP2.2)

Summary

  • Ethylene plays a crucial role in plant resistance to necrotrophic pathogens, in which ETHYLENE RESPONSE FACTORs (ERFs) are often involved.
  • Here, we evaluated the role of an ERF transcription factor, RELATED TO AP2 2 (RAP2.2), in Botrytis resistance and ethylene responses in Arabidopsis. We analyzed the resistance of transgenic plants overexpressing RAP2.2 and the T-DNA insertion mutant to Botrytis cinerea. We assessed its role in the ethylene signaling pathway by molecular and genetic approaches.
  • RAP2.2-overexpressing transgenic plants showed increased resistance to B. cinerea, whereas its T-DNA insertion mutant rap2.2-3 showed decreased resistance. Overexpression of RAP2.2 in ethylene insensitive 2 (ein2) and ein3 ein3-like 1 (eil1) mutants restored their resistance to B. cinerea. Both ethylene and Botrytis infection induced the expression of RAP2.2 and the induction was disrupted in ein2 and ein3 eil1 mutants. We identified rap2.12-1 as a T-DNA insertion mutant of RAP2.12, the closest homolog of RAP2.2. The hypocotyls of rap2.2-3 rap2.12-1 double mutants showed ethylene insensitivity. The constitutive triple response in constitutive triple response1 (ctr1) was partially released in the rap2.2-3 rap2.12-1 ctr1 triple mutants.
  • Our findings demonstrate that RAP2.2 functions as an important regulator in Botrytis resistance and ethylene responses.