Evaluation of Arabidopsis thaliana as a Model Host for Xylella fastidiosa
The bacterium Xylella fastidiosa causes a number of plant diseases of significant economic impact. To date, progress determining mechanisms of host-plant susceptibility, tolerance, or resistance has been slow, due in large part to the long generation time and limited available genetic resources for grape, almond, and other known hosts of X. fastidiosa. To overcome many of these limitations, Arabidopsis thaliana has been evaluated as a host for X. fastidiosa. A pin-prick inoculation method has been developed to infect Arabidopsis with X. fastidiosa. Following infection, X. fastidiosa multiplies and can be detected by microscopy, polymerase chain reaction, and isolation. The ecotypes Van-0, LL-0, and Tsu-1 all allow more growth of strain X. fastidiosa Temecula than the reference ecotype Col-0. Affymetrix ATH1 microarray analysis of inoculated vs. noninoculated Tsu-1 reveals gene expression changes that differ greatly from changes seen after infection with apoplast-colonizing bacteria such as Psuedomonas syringae pvs. tomato or syringae. Many genes responsive to oxidative stress are differentially regulated, while classic pathogenesis-related genes are not induced by X. fastidiosa infection.