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Toxic and signalling roles of oxalic acid. oxalic acid: natural born killer or natural born protector?

Abstract : Oxalic acid is thought to be a key factor of the early pathogenic stage in a wide range of necrotrophic fungi. We have recently published that oxalic acid induces Programmed Cell Death (PCD) in Arabidopsis thaliana cells. This cell death results from an early anionic efflux which is a prerequisite for the synthesis of ethylene and the PCD. Complementary experiments have been carried out by using seedlings of A. thaliana. The effects of millimolar concentrations of oxalic acid were analysed on A. thaliana seedlings. A treatment with a 3 mM oxalic acid solution does not alter the development of the plants but induces the transcription of defence related genes which are anion channel dependant. Moreover, our results suggest that a pre-treatment of the seedlings with oxalic acid is able to confer the resistance of A. thaliana against Sclerotium rolfsii. Regarding our results, we suggest that oxalic acid plays two distinct roles, depending on the concentration: a high concentration of oxalic acid induces a large PCD and then contribute to the progression of the fungi. However, at low concentration it is able to induce the establishment of a resistance of the plant against the fungi.
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Arnaud Lehner, Patrice Meimoun, Rafik Errakhi, Karine Madiona, Mustapha Barakate, et al.. Toxic and signalling roles of oxalic acid. oxalic acid: natural born killer or natural born protector?. Plant Signaling and Behavior, Taylor & Francis, 2008, 59 (11), pp.3121-3129. ⟨10.4161/psb.3.9.6634⟩. ⟨hal-01805081⟩

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