Phytophthora root and stem rot (PRR) caused by Phytophthora sojae is one of
the most devastating diseases of soybean (Glycine max). Harpin proteins in
plant pathogenic bacteria have been confirmed to enhance disease and insect
resistance in crop plants. The team of Qian Du from Jilin University in
China introduced a harpin protein-encoding gene, hrpZpsta (renamed hrpZm),
from Pseudomonas syringae pv. tabaci and introduced it to soybean cultivars.
Three independent transgenic lines overexpressing hrpZm were obtained and
exhibited enhanced tolerance to P. sojae infection compared to the
non-transformed (NT) plants. Analysis revealed that the activities of
defense-related enzymes increased significantly in the transgenic lines
compared to the NT after inoculation.
These results suggest that overexpression of the hrpZm gene significantly
enhanced PRR tolerance in soybean. This could provide an alternate approach
for developing soybean varieties with improved tolerance against the