Feb 8, 2019

The toxic guardians - multiple toxin-antitoxin systems provide stability, avoid deletions and maintain virulence genes of Pseudomonas syringae virulence plasmids

Mobile DNA
Leire BardajiJesús Murillo


Pseudomonas syringae is a γ-proteobacterium causing economically relevant diseases in practically all cultivated plants. Most isolates of this pathogen contain native plasmids collectively carrying many pathogenicity and virulence genes. However, P. syringae is generally an opportunistic pathogen primarily inhabiting environmental reservoirs, which could exert a low selective pressure for virulence plasmids. Additionally, these plasmids usually contain a large proportion of repeated sequences, which could compromise plasmid integrity. Therefore, the identification of plasmid stability determinants and mechanisms to preserve virulence genes is essential to understand the evolution of this pathogen and its adaptability to agroecosystems. The three virulence plasmids of P. syringae pv. savastanoi NCPPB 3335 contain from one to seven functional stability determinants, including three highly active toxin-antitoxin systems (TA) in both pPsv48A and pPsv48C. The TA systems reduced loss frequency of pPsv48A by two orders of magnitude, whereas one of the two replicons of pPsv48C likely confers stable inheritance by itself. Notably, inactivation of the TA systems from pPsv48C exposed the plasmid to high-frequency deletions promoted by mob...Continue Reading

Mentioned in this Paper

In Vivo
Proteobacterium 1
Virus Replication
Recombination, Genetic
Gene Deletion

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