HAG Effector Evolution in Pyricularia Species and Plant Cell Death Suppression by HAG4. Academic Article uri icon


  • Seventy host-adapted gene (HAG) effector family members from Pyricularia species are found in P. oryzae and three closely related species (isolates LS and 18-2 from an unknown Pyricularia sp., P. grisea, and P. pennisetigena) that share at least eight orthologous HAG family members with P. oryzae. The genome sequence of a more distantly related species, P. penniseti, lacks HAG genes, suggesting a time frame for the origin of the gene family in the genus. In P. oryzae, HAG4 is uniquely found in the genetic lineage that contains populations adapted to Setaria and Oryza hosts. We find a nearly identical HAG4 allele in a P. grisea isolate, suggesting transfer of HAG4 from P. grisea to P. oryzae. HAG4 encodes a suppressor of plant cell death. Yeast two-hybrid screens with several HAG genes independently identify common interacting clones from a rice complementary DNA library, suggesting conservation of protein surface motifs between HAG homologs with as little as 40% protein sequence identity. HAG family orthologs have diverged rapidly and HAG15 orthologs display unusually high rates of sequence divergence compared with adjacent genes suggesting gene-specific accelerated divergence. The sequence diversity of the HAG homologs in Pyricularia species provides a resource for examining mechanisms of gene family evolution and the relationship to structural and functional evolution of HAG effector family activity. [Formula: see text] Copyright 2022 The Author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the CC BY 4.0 International license.

published proceedings

  • Mol Plant Microbe Interact

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Chen, M., Farmer, N., Zhong, Z., Zheng, W., Tang, W., Han, Y., ... Ebbole, D. J.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Chen, Meilian||Farmer, Nick||Zhong, Zhenhui||Zheng, Wenhui||Tang, Wei||Han, Yijuan||Lu, Guodong||Wang, Zonghua||Ebbole, Daniel J

publication date

  • August 2022