Canadian Forest Service Publications

Ultrastructural localization of chitin in cell walls of Rigidoporus lignosus, the white-rot fungus of rubber tree roots. 1991. Nicole, M.; Benhamou, N. Physiol. Mol. Plant Pathol. 39: 415-431.

Year: 1991

Issued by: Laurentian Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 16434

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

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The distribution of N-acetylglucosamine residues in the cell wall of the white-rot pathogenic fungus, Rigidoporus lignosus, was studied by using gold labelled wheatgerm agglutinin bound to ovomucoid-colloidal gold. Ultrastructural investigation of R. lignosus-infected root tissues of Hevea brasiliensis showed a modification of the fungal cell wall throughout the infection process. Gold particles were found to occur on both thick- and thin-walled hyphae of R. lignosus rhizomorphs at the root surface. Walls of hyphae that had penetrated the roots were only labelled when they were out of the host cell, suggesting that modification of chitin molecules may be related to the excretion of host cell wall degrading enzymes. Variation in the distribution of gold particles was observed over hyphal walls of both colonized phellem and xylem cells. The observation that N-acetylglucosamine residues were released in the host cell cytoplasm suggests that lytic enzymes alter the fungal cell walls. Released chitin oligosaccharides may play a role in the induction of the root's defence system against fungal attack.