The Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) suppressor 2b co-localizes with AGO4 in cytoplasmic and nuclear fractions of Arabidopsis thaliana. Biochemical fractionation of A. thaliana cellular extracts revealed that 2b and AGO4 coexist in multiple size exclusions. 2b transgenic A. thaliana exhibited an enhanced accumulation of 24nt siRNAs from FWA and other heterochromatic loci. These plants also exhibited hypo-methylation of endogenous as well as transgene FWA promoter at non-CG sites. In corroboration, both transgenic 2b and CMV infection affected the regulation of transposons which mimics the ago4 phenotype. In conclusion, 2b perturbs plant defense by interfering with AGO4 regulated transcriptional gene silencing.
- Received February 3, 2016.
- Accepted July 27, 2016.
- © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd
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