Transcriptome analysis of Meloidogyne incognita encumbered by Pasteuria penetrans endospores provides new insights into bacteria and nematode interaction

in Nematology
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Root-knot nematodes (RKN, Meloidogyne spp.) are one of the most harmful pests in agriculture. Pasteuria penetrans, an obligate hyperparasite of RKN, is an effective biological control agent. However, little is known about the molecular mechanisms of interaction between P. penetrans and the second-stage juvenile (J2) of Meloidogyne incognita. Here, we used transcriptome sequencing to characterise the differential expression profiles between control J2 of M. incognita and J2 encumbered by P. penetrans endospores. A total of 445 genes were found to be differentially expressed, including 406 up-regulated and 39 down-regulated genes. Thirty-seven putative immune-related genes encoding collagens, cytochrome P450, lysozymes and other active proteins were identified. Genes involved in the ‘biosynthesis of unsaturated fatty acids’ pathway and several core sets of immune effectors were up-regulated, indicating conserved immune mechanisms among different nematodes. Down-regulation of cytochrome P450-related genes might suggest a specific defence response of M. incognita encumbered by P. penetrans endospores.

Transcriptome analysis of Meloidogyne incognita encumbered by Pasteuria penetrans endospores provides new insights into bacteria and nematode interaction

in Nematology



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    Number of Meloidogyne incognita unigenes assigned to gene ontology (GO) terms. The results were summarised in three major categories: biological process, cellular component and molecular function.

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    Volcano plot of differentially expressed genes between Pasteuria penetrans endospore encumbered Meloidogyne incognita (MI_T) and the control (MI_C). Red, green and blue dots indicated the up-regulated, down-regulated and non-significantly changed genes, respectively. The q value (the corrected p value) was adjusted for multiple comparisons (Storey & Tibshirani, 2003). The parameters q value < 0.05 and fold change ⩾ 2 were used as thresholds to determine the significance of differentially expressed genes.

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    Significantly enriched Gene Ontology (GO) terms of Meloidogyne incognita under the major groups. A: Significantly enriched GO terms under the major group of biological processes; B: Significantly enriched GO terms under the major group of molecular function.

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    The top 20 KEGG pathways of Meloidogyne incognita enriched by up-regulated DEGs (A) and down-regulated DEGs (B). Rich factor indicated the ratio of the DEGs number and the annotated genes number in the pathway. The colours from purple to red indicate the decrease of the q value from 1.00 to 0.00. The dots on each line represent the enriched KEGG pathways that are marked on the left. The size of the dots corresponds to the number of genes; the larger the size, the more DEGs are involved in the related pathway.

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    Validation of differentially expressed genes of Meloidogyne incognita identified from RNA-seq using quantitative qRT-PCR analysis. Bars = standard error. Asterisks indicate significant differences (P<0.05) between MI_C and MI_T.

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    Flow chart of the experimental design.

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