Draft genome sequencing and secretome analysis of fungal phytopathogen Ascochyta rabiei provides insight into the necrotrophic effector repertoire

Sci Rep. 2016 Apr 19;6:24638. doi: 10.1038/srep24638.


Constant evolutionary pressure acting on pathogens refines their molecular strategies to attain successful pathogenesis. Recent studies have shown that pathogenicity mechanisms of necrotrophic fungi are far more intricate than earlier evaluated. However, only a few studies have explored necrotrophic fungal pathogens. Ascochyta rabiei is a necrotrophic fungus that causes devastating blight disease of chickpea (Cicer arietinum). Here, we report a 34.6 megabase draft genome assembly of A. rabiei. The genome assembly covered more than 99% of the gene space and 4,259 simple sequence repeats were identified in the assembly. A total of 10,596 high confidence protein-coding genes were predicted which includes a large and diverse inventory of secretory proteins, transporters and primary and secondary metabolism enzymes reflecting the necrotrophic lifestyle of A. rabiei. A wide range of genes encoding carbohydrate-active enzymes capable for degradation of complex polysaccharides were also identified. Comprehensive analysis predicted a set of 758 secretory proteins including both classical and non-classical secreted proteins. Several of these predicted secretory proteins showed high cysteine content and numerous tandem repeats. Together, our analyses would broadly expand our knowledge and offer insights into the pathogenesis and necrotrophic lifestyle of fungal phytopathogens.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Ascomycota / genetics*
  • Ascomycota / metabolism
  • Fungal Proteins / genetics
  • Fungal Proteins / metabolism
  • Genome, Fungal*
  • Molecular Sequence Annotation
  • Secretory Pathway
  • Virulence / genetics


  • Fungal Proteins