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Roles of Dicer-Like Proteins 2 and 4 in Intra- and Intercellular Antiviral Silencing

Qin, C. and Li, B. and Fan, Y. and Zhang, X. and Yu, Z. and Ryabov, E. and Zhao, M. and Wang, H. and Shi, N. and Zhang, P. and Jackson, S. and Tör, M. and Cheng, Q. and Liu, Y. and Gallusci, P. and Hong, Y. (2017) Roles of Dicer-Like Proteins 2 and 4 in Intra- and Intercellular Antiviral Silencing. Plant Physiology, 174 (2). pp. 1067-1081. ISSN Print 0032-0889 Online 1532-2548

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Abstract

RNA silencing is an innate antiviral mechanism conserved in organisms across kingdoms. Such cellular defense involves DICER or DICER-LIKEs (DCLs) that process viral RNAs into small interfering (vsi)RNAs. Plants encode four DCLs which play diverse roles in cell-autonomous virus-induced RNA silencing (known as VIGS) against viral invasion. However, intracellular VIGS can spread between cells, and the genetic basis and involvement of vsiRNAs in non-cell autonomous VIGS remains poorly understood. Here using GFP as a reporter gene together with a suite of DCL RNAi transgenic lines, we show that in addition to well-established activities of DCLs in intracellular VIGS and vsiRNA biogenesis, DCL4 inhibits intercellular VIGS whilst DCL2 is required, likely along with DCL2-processed/dependent vsiRNAs and their precursor RNAs, for efficient VIGS trafficking from epidermal to adjacent cells. DCL4 imposed an epistatic effect on DCL2 to impede cell-to-cell spread of VIGS. Our results demonstrate previously unknown functions for DCL2 and DCL4 which may form a dual defensive frontier for intra- and intercellular silencing to double-protect cells from virus infection in Nicotiana benthamiana.

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Uncontrolled Keywords: DICER-LIKEs, vsiRNAs, non-cell autonomous intercellular VIGS, Nicotiana benthamiana
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
Divisions: Academic Departments > Institute of Science and the Environment
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Copyright Info: Open Access article
Depositing User: Janet Davidson
Date Deposited: 09 May 2017 07:06
Last Modified: 26 Jun 2017 11:12
URI: https://eprints.worc.ac.uk/id/eprint/5489

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