VIGS, HIGS and FIGS: small RNA silencing in the interactions of viruses or filamentous organisms with their plant hosts

Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2015 Aug;26:141-6. doi: 10.1016/j.pbi.2015.06.007. Epub 2015 Aug 3.


Recent evidence indicates two-way traffic of silencing RNA between filamentous organisms and their plant hosts. There are also indications that suppressors of RNA silencing are transferred from filamentous organisms into host plant cells where they influence the innate immune system. Here I use virus disease as a template for interpretation of RNA silencing in connection with filamentous organisms and infected plant cells. I propose that host plant interactions of these organisms are influenced by RNA silencing networks in which there are: small interfering RNAs from the host that are transported into the filamentous organism and vice versa; silencing suppressors from the organism that are transported into the host; endogenous small interfering RNAs and micro RNAs that target components of the innate immune system or endogenous suppressors of the innate immune system.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Gene Silencing / physiology
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions
  • RNA Interference / physiology*
  • RNA, Small Interfering / genetics
  • RNA, Small Interfering / physiology
  • Viruses / pathogenicity


  • RNA, Small Interfering