Significance of F-box Nictaba proteins for Pseudomonas syringae infection of Arabidopsis

Treatment of Arabidopsis plants with the plant hormone salicylic acid and infection with Pseudomonas syringae results in up-regulation of an Arabidopsis lectin called F-box Nictaba. This protein is built of an N-terminal F-box domain and a C-terminal lectin domain that is homologous to the tobacco lectin Nictaba. Glycan array analyses revealed that the F-box Nictaba protein exhibits specificity towards N- and O-glycans containing (fucosylated) LacNAc structures (e.g. Lewis A motifs). Infection experiments with Pseudomonas demonstrated that transgenic lines with enhanced F-box Nictaba expression are less susceptible to bacterial infection. At present, it remains unclear how Lewis A epitopes, F-box-Nictaba expression and Pseudomonas infection relate to each other and how protein-carbohydrate interactions contribute to the bacterial infection process and the plant defense response. Pseudomonas mutants are being used to study the importance of glycosylation in the infection process. We aim to decipher the importance of glycan structures in the interaction between Pseudomonas and F-box-Nictaba