Novel defensin subfamily from spinach (Spinacia oleracea)

FEBS Lett. 1998 Sep 18;435(2-3):159-62. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(98)01060-6.


Antimicrobial peptides (So-D1-7) were isolated from a crude cell wall preparation from spinach leaves (Spinacia oleracea cv. Matador) and, judged from their amino acid sequences, six of them (So-D2-7) represented a novel structural subfamily of plant defensins (group IV). Group-IV defensins were also functionally distinct from those of groups I-III. They were active at concentrations < 20 microM against Gram-positive (Clavibacter michiganensis) and Gram-negative (Ralstonia solanacearum) bacterial pathogens, as well as against fungi, such as Fusarium culmorum, F. solani, Bipolaris maydis, and Colletotrichum lagenarium. Fungal inhibition occurred without hyphal branching. Group-IV defensins were preferentially distributed in the epidermal cell layer of leaves and in the subepidermal region of stems.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Anti-Infective Agents / isolation & purification*
  • Defensins
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plant Proteins / genetics*
  • Plant Proteins / isolation & purification*
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Analysis
  • Spinacia oleracea / genetics
  • Spinacia oleracea / metabolism*


  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Defensins
  • Plant Proteins