Light modulates important physiological features of Ralstonia pseudosolanacearum during the colonization of tomato plants

Sci Rep. 2021 Jul 15;11(1):14531. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-93871-9.


Ralstonia pseudosolanacearum GMI1000 (Rpso GMI1000) is a soil-borne vascular phytopathogen that infects host plants through the root system causing wilting disease in a wide range of agro-economic interest crops, producing economical losses. Several features contribute to the full bacterial virulence. In this work we study the participation of light, an important environmental factor, in the regulation of the physiological attributes and infectivity of Rpso GMI1000. In silico analysis of the Rpso genome revealed the presence of a Rsp0254 gene, which encodes a putative blue light LOV-type photoreceptor. We constructed a mutant strain of Rpso lacking the LOV protein and found that the loss of this protein and light, influenced characteristics involved in the pathogenicity process such as motility, adhesion and the biofilms development, which allows the successful host plant colonization, rendering bacterial wilt. This protein could be involved in the adaptive responses to environmental changes. We demonstrated that light sensing and the LOV protein, would be used as a location signal in the host plant, to regulate the expression of several virulence factors, in a time and tissue dependent way. Consequently, bacteria could use an external signal and Rpsolov gene to know their location within plant tissue during the colonization process.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Adhesion / physiology
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics*
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism
  • Biofilms / growth & development
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions / physiology*
  • Light
  • Lycopersicon esculentum / microbiology*
  • Polysaccharides, Bacterial / genetics
  • Polysaccharides, Bacterial / metabolism
  • Ralstonia / pathogenicity
  • Ralstonia / physiology*


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Polysaccharides, Bacterial

Supplementary concepts

  • Ralstonia pseudosolanacearum