Structural basis of NLR activation and innate immune signalling in plants

Natsumi Maruta*, Hayden Burdett, Bryan Y.J. Lim, Xiahao Hu, Sneha Desa, Mohammad Kawsar Manik, Bostjan Kobe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Animals and plants have NLRs (nucleotide-binding leucine-rich repeat receptors) that recognize the presence of pathogens and initiate innate immune responses. In plants, there are three types of NLRs distinguished by their N-terminal domain: the CC (coiled-coil) domain NLRs, the TIR (Toll/interleukin-1 receptor) domain NLRs and the RPW8 (resistance to powdery mildew 8)-like coiled-coil domain NLRs. CC-NLRs (CNLs) and TIR-NLRs (TNLs) generally act as sensors of effectors secreted by pathogens, while RPW8-NLRs (RNLs) signal downstream of many sensor NLRs and are called helper NLRs. Recent studies have revealed three dimensional structures of a CNL (ZAR1) including its inactive, intermediate and active oligomeric state, as well as TNLs (RPP1 and ROQ1) in their active oligomeric states. Furthermore, accumulating evidence suggests that members of the family of lipase-like EDS1 (enhanced disease susceptibility 1) proteins, which are uniquely found in seed plants, play a key role in providing a link between sensor NLRs and helper NLRs during innate immune responses. Here, we summarize the implications of the plant NLR structures that provide insights into distinct mechanisms of action by the different sensor NLRs and discuss plant NLR-mediated innate immune signalling pathways involving the EDS1 family proteins and RNLs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-26
Number of pages22
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jan 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • CC domain
  • EDS1
  • NLR
  • plant innate immunity
  • RNL
  • TIR domain


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