Expression and subcellular compartmentation of Aspergillus niger β-glucosidase in transgenic tobacco result in an increased insecticidal activity on whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci)

Shu Wei, Yaniv Semel, Ben Ami Bravdo, Henryk Czosnek, Oded Shoseyov*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

Transgenic Nicotiana tabacum plants expressing Aspergillus niger β-glucosidase (EC 3.2.1.21) gene (BGL1) in different subcellular compartments [cell wall (Tcw), endoplasmic reticulum (Ter), and vacuole (Tvc)] were analyzed to study the effects of BGL1 localization on plant growth and plant-insect interaction. Transgenic and non-transgenic plants were grown and characterized in a greenhouse with 25/16 °C day/night temperatures and natural sunlight. Plant insecticidal activity was analyzed with adult whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci) in vial and cage experiments. Compared with wild-type controls, Ter and Tvc transgenic plants did not differ significantly in seed germination, plant growth rate, plant height, or flowering time. However, in Tcw seed germination and beginning of flowering were significantly delayed, and leaf area and plant fresh weight were significantly reduced. Transgenic plants had a marked insecticidal effect on whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci) and on Diptera spp. flies. The density of secretory glandular trichomes was significantly greater in transgenic than in wild-type leaves. This work indicates that hydrolysis of yet to be identified glycosides, may play an important role in plant insect resistance mechanism and plant trichome development.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1175-1181
Number of pages7
JournalPlant Science
Volume172
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2007

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to acknowledge the Eugine and Edith Schoenberger Foundation for the financial support of our research. We are grateful to Ms. T. Marci of the Biotechnology Center and Ms. N. Bahat of the Central Laboratory of this faculty for their technical assistance in the GC–MS and SEM analysis.

Keywords

  • Bemisia tabaci
  • Nicotiana tabacum
  • Plant-insect interactions
  • Trichome
  • β-Glucosidase

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