Coronafacoyl phytotoxins are secondary metabolites that are produced by various phytopathogenic bacteria, including several pathovars of the Gram-negative bacterium Pseudomonas syringae as well as the Gram-positive potato scab pathogen Streptomyces scabies. The phytotoxins are composed of the polyketide coronafacic acid (CFA) linked via an amide bond to amino acids or amino acid derivatives, and their biosynthesis involves the cfa and cfa-like gene clusters that are found in P. syringae and S. scabies, respectively. The S. scabies cfa-like gene cluster was previously reported to contain several genes that are absent from the P. syringae cfa gene cluster, including one (oxr) encoding a putative F420 -dependent oxidoreductase, and another (sdr) encoding a predicted short-chain dehydrogenase/reductase. Using gene deletion analysis, we demonstrated that both oxr and sdr are required for normal production of the S. scabies coronafacoyl phytotoxins, and structural analysis of metabolites that accumulated in the Δsdr mutant cultures revealed that Sdr is directly involved in the biosynthesis of the CFA moiety. Our results suggest that S. scabies and P. syringae use distinct biosynthetic pathways for producing coronafacoyl phytotoxins, which are important mediators of host-pathogen interactions in various plant pathosystems.
© 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.