An alpha-glucan elicitor from the cell wall of a biocontrol binucleate Rhizoctonia isolate.Carbohydr Res. 2005 Mar 21; 340(4):619-27.CR
Binucleate Rhizoctonia (BNR) isolate (232-C6) is an effective biocontrol agent for protection of potato from Rhizoctonia canker, a disease caused by Rhizoctonia solani. Production of hydrolytic enzymes is one of the best known inducible defense responses following microbial infection. We isolated and characterized a cell wall alpha-glucan from BNR, which induces beta-1,3 glucanase activities in potato sprouts, the primary site of infection by R. solani. An autoclaving method, previously reported for isolation of oligosaccharide elicitors was used, and the glucan purified by chromatographic techniques. Maximal induction of beta-1,3 glucanase activity in potato sprouts was obtained with 250 microg of the alpha-glucan elicitor after 6 days from inoculation time. Both, BNR mycelium and the alpha-glucan produced a similar kinetic response of beta-1,3 glucanase. However, the alpha-glucan did not induce phytoalexin accumulation, previously correlated with the defense response. Uronic acids (approximately 10% with respect to total neutral sugars) were determined and identified as glucuronic acid by high-pH anion-exchange chromatography. Methylation analysis showed that the glucan consists of (1-->3) and (1-->4)-linked glucose units with preponderance of the first ones. Some of the (1-->4) linkages were branched at position 6. The glucan was partially degraded with amyloglucosidase. This, together with the NMR spectra data and the high optical rotation of the original (+195 degrees) and degraded glucans (+175 degrees) proved the alpha configuration. Further methylation of the amyloglucosidase degraded glucans indicated that they consist of (1-->3)-linked glucoses. The present study is the first report on the isolation and characterization of an alpha-glucan from Rhizoctonia, that may be important as a biocontrol factor.