An avirulence gene, AvrLmJ1, from the blackleg fungus, Leptosphaeria maculans, confers avirulence to Brassica juncea cultivars Academic Article uri icon


  • The fungus Leptosphaeria maculans causes blackleg of Brassica species. Here, we report the mapping and subsequent cloning of an avirulence gene from L. maculans. This gene, termed AvrLmJ1, confers avirulence towards all three Brassica juncea cultivars tested. Analysis of RNA-seq data showed that AvrLmJ1 is housed in a region of the L. maculans genome which contains only one gene that is highly expressed in planta. The closest genes are 57 and 33 kb away and, like other avirulence genes of L. maculans, AvrLmJ1 is located within an AT-rich, gene-poor region of the genome. The encoded protein is 141 amino acids, has a predicted signal peptide and is cysteine rich. Two virulent isolates contain a premature stop codon in AvrLmJ1. Complementation of an isolate that forms cotyledonary lesions on B. juncea with the wild-type allele of AvrLmJ1 confers avirulence towards all three B. juncea cultivars tested, suggesting that the gene may confer species-specific avirulence activity.

publication date

  • 2014