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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2018, 19(6), 1662; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms19061662

Regulation and Evolution of NLR Genes: A Close Interconnection for Plant Immunity

1
Council for Agricultural Research and Economics—Research Centre for Cereal and Industrial Crops, s.s. 673, km 25.2, 71122 Foggia, Italy
2
Council for Agricultural Research and Economics—Research Centre for Genomics and Bioinformatics, via San Protaso 302, 29017 Fiorenzuola d’Arda (PC), Italy
3
Council for Agricultural Research and Economics—Research Centre for Cereal and Industrial Crops, s.s. 11 to Torino, km 2.5, 13100 Vercelli, Italy
4
Council for Agricultural Research and Economics—Research Centre for Cereal and Industrial Crops, via Stezzano 24, 24126 Bergamo, Italy
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 4 May 2018 / Revised: 1 June 2018 / Accepted: 2 June 2018 / Published: 5 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Defense Genes Against Biotic Stresses)
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Abstract

NLR (NOD-like receptor) genes belong to one of the largest gene families in plants. Their role in plants’ resistance to pathogens has been clearly described for many members of this gene family, and dysregulation or overexpression of some of these genes has been shown to induce an autoimmunity state that strongly affects plant growth and yield. For this reason, these genes have to be tightly regulated in their expression and activity, and several regulatory mechanisms are described here that tune their gene expression and protein levels. This gene family is subjected to rapid evolution, and to maintain diversity at NLRs, a plethora of genetic mechanisms have been identified as sources of variation. Interestingly, regulation of gene expression and evolution of this gene family are two strictly interconnected aspects. Indeed, some examples have been reported in which mechanisms of gene expression regulation have roles in promotion of the evolution of this gene family. Moreover, co-evolution of the NLR gene family and other gene families devoted to their control has been recently demonstrated, as in the case of miRNAs. View Full-Text
Keywords: NLR genes; gene regulation; gene evolution; plant breeding NLR genes; gene regulation; gene evolution; plant breeding
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Borrelli, G.M.; Mazzucotelli, E.; Marone, D.; Crosatti, C.; Michelotti, V.; Valè, G.; Mastrangelo, A.M. Regulation and Evolution of NLR Genes: A Close Interconnection for Plant Immunity. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2018, 19, 1662.

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