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Intron Retention Fine-Tunes the Resistance of the Rice Mutant pls4 to Rice Sheath Blight (Rhizotonia solani AG I.1a)

Shaochun Liu, Jiamin Hu, Haohua He, Junru Fu, Xu Jie, Dahu Zhou*, Haihui Fu*

Key Laboratory of Crop Physiology, Ecology and Genetic Breeding, Ministry of Education, Jiangxi Agricultural University, Nanchang, 330045, China

* Corresponding Authors: Dahu Zhou. Email: ; Haihui Fu. Email:

(This article belongs to this Special Issue: Plant Omics in Challenging Environment)

Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany 2023, 92(7), 2035-2049.


OsPLS4 encodes a β-ketoacyl carrier protein reductase (KAR). The role of OsPLS4 in rice sheath blight (Rhizoctonia solani) remains unclear. Our preliminary studies showed that premature leaf senescence mutants (pls4) were highly susceptive to sheath blight in the early stage of rice development. To explore the role of this gene in the development of rice sheath blight, the transcriptome profiles of the rice pls4 mutant and wild type were compared by RNA-seq. The results revealed 2,569 differentially expressed genes (DEGs). The down-regulated genes were significantly enriched in the defense response-related biological processes. These down-regulated genes included the chitinase genes and WRKY genes, which were significantly changed in pls4 mutants. Furthermore, 467 genes induced significant alternative splicing (AS) events. Among them, intron retention (IR) affected gene expression levels and functions of the vitamin B6 (VB6) metabolism pathway related to sheath blight. This result suggests that IR plays an important role in the sheath blight resistance of mutant pls4. Together, these results indicate that pls4 could be involved in the biological process of sheath blight via DEGs and the fine-tuning of IR. The present study provides a molecular basis for further investigation of the resistance of rice to sheath blight.


Cite This Article

Liu, S., Hu, J., He, H., Fu, J., Jie, X. et al. (2023). Intron Retention Fine-Tunes the Resistance of the Rice Mutant pls4 to Rice Sheath Blight (Rhizotonia solani AG I.1a). Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany, 92(7), 2035–2049.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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