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Legume Nodules: Massive Infection in the Absence of Defense Induction
- Berrabah, Fathi, Ratet, Pascal, Gourion, Benjamin
- Molecular plant-microbe interactions 2019 v.32 no.1 pp. 35-44
- bacteria, immunity, legumes, nitrogen, symbiosis, tissues
- Plants of the legume family host massive intracellular bacterial populations in the tissues of specialized organs, the nodules. In these organs, the bacteria, named rhizobia, can fix atmospheric nitrogen and transfer it to the plant. This special metabolic skill provides to the legumes an advantage when they grow on nitrogen-scarce substrates. While packed with rhizobia, the nodule cells remain alive, metabolically active, and do not develop defense reactions. Here, we review our knowledge on the control of plant immunity during the rhizobia-legume symbiosis. We present the results of an evolutionary process that selected both divergence of microbial-associated molecular motifs and active suppressors of immunity on the rhizobial side and, on the legume side, active mechanisms that contribute to suppression of immunity.