The expression of systemic acquired resistance (SAR) in plants involves the upregulation of many Pathogenesis-Related (PR) genes, which work in concert to confer resistance to a broad spectrum of pathogens. Because SAR is a costly process, SAR-associated transcription must be tightly regulated. Arabidopsis thaliana SNI1 (for Suppressor of NPR1, Inducible) is a negative regulator of SAR required to dampen the basal expression of PR genes. Whole genome transcriptional profiling showed that in the sni1 mutant, Nonexpresser of PR genes (NPR1)–dependent benzothiadiazole S-methylester–responsive genes were specifically derepressed. Interestingly, SNI1 also repressed transcription when expressed in yeast, suggesting that it functions as an active transcriptional repressor through a highly conserved mechanism. Chromatin immunoprecipitation indicated that histone modification may be involved in SNI1-mediated repression. Sequence comparison with orthologs in other plant species and a saturating NAAIRS-scanning mutagenesis of SNI1 identified regions in SNI1 that are required for its activity. The structural similarity of SNI1 to Armadillo repeat proteins implies that SNI1 may form a scaffold for interaction with proteins that modulate transcription.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/dong_wang/6/