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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Department of Plant Sciences

UC Davis

Boron deficiency in the legume-rhizobia interaction:Symbiosis or pathogenesis?


The rhizobia-legume symbiosis is driven by cell and molecular plant-microbe interactions that must work very accurately to avoid triggering of host plant defense reactions. Failure in cell or molecular components implicated in the interaction often results in pathogenic rather than symbiotic responses. Boron (B), a micronutrient essential for plant growth, seems to modulate signaling during nodule development. Boron deficiency alters early preinfection and invasion events, turning incompatible the interaction between the legume and its host rhizobio, and some plant defense mechanisms, including morphological barriers and synthesis of pathogenesis-related (PR) proteins take place.

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