Reactive Oxygen Species Contribute to Symptomless, Extreme Resistance to Potato virus X in Tobacco

Lóránt Király*, Réka Albert, Orsolya Zsemberi, Ildikó Schwarczinger, Yaser Mohamed Hafez, András Künstler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Here we show that in tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum cultivar Samsun NN Rx1) the development of Rx1 gene-mediated, symptomless, extreme resistance to Potato virus X (PVX) is preceded by an early, intensive accumulation of the reactive oxygen species (ROS) superoxide (O2·), evident between 1 and 6 h after inoculation and associated with increased nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) oxidase activities. This suggests a direct contribution of this ROS to virus restriction during symptomless, extreme resistance. Superoxide inhibition in PVX-inoculated leaves by infiltration of antioxidants (superoxide dismutase [SOD] and catalase [CAT]) partially suppresses extreme resistance in parallel with the appearance of localized leaf necrosis resembling a hypersensitive resistance (HR) response. F1 progeny from crosses of Rx1 and ferritin overproducer (deficient in production of the ROS OH·) tobaccos also display a suppressed extreme resistance to PVX, because significantly increased virus levels are coupled to HR, suggesting a role of the hydroxyl radical (OH·) in this symptomless antiviral defense. In addition, treatment of PVX-susceptible tobacco with a superoxide-generating agent (riboflavin/methionine) results in HR-like symptoms and reduced PVX titers. Finally, by comparing defense responses during PVX-elicited symptomless, extreme resistance and HR-type resistance elicited by Tobacco mosaic virus, we conclude that defense reactions typical of an HR (e.g., induction of cell death/ROS-regulator genes and antioxidants) are early and transient in the course of extreme resistance. Our results demonstrate the contribution of early accumulation of ROS (superoxide, OH·) in limiting PVX replication during symptomless extreme resistance and support earlier findings that virus-elicited HR represents a delayed, slower resistance response than symptomless, extreme resistance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1870-1884
Number of pages15
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • Biochemistry and cell biology
  • Disease resistance
  • Molecular
  • Pathogen recognition by plants
  • Plant immune responses
  • Plant stress and abiotic disorders
  • Virology


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