Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Klink, Vincent

Committee Member

Lawrence, Gary W.

Committee Member

Gordon, Donna M.

Committee Member

Lu, Shien

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Biological Sciences

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Biological Sciences


Heterodera glycines, soybean cyst nematode (SCN) causes more than one billion dollars soyben production loss in the U.S. annually. SCN is an obligate parasite of specialized feeding cells within the host root known as syncytium. The SCN resistance genes and signaling pathways in soybean have not been fully characterized. Gene expression analysis in syncytium from compatible and incompatible interactions identified candidate genes that might involve conferring resistance to SCN. This dissertation aimed to investigate the biological functions of the candidate resistance genes to confirm the roles of these genes in resistance to SCN. The study demonstrated a role of syntaxin 31-like genes (Gm-SYP38) in resistance to SCN. Overexpression of Gm-SYP38 induced the transcriptional activity of the cytoplasmic receptor-like kinase BOTRYTIS INDUCED KINASE 1 (Gm-BIK1-6). Overexpression of Gm-BIK1-6 rescued the resistant phenotype. In contrast, Gm-BIK1-6 RNAi increased parasitism. In another experiment, the expression of a Glycine max homolog of LESION SIMULATING DISEASE1 (LSD1) resulted in the transcriptional activation of ENHANCED DISEASE SUSCEPTIBILITY1 (EDS1) and NONEXPRESSOR OF PR1 (NPR1), that function in salicylic acid (SA) signaling, implicating the involvement of the antiapoptotic, environmental response gene LESION SIMULATING DISEASE1 (LSD1) in defense that is demonstrated here. The study also investigated the role of SNARE components (genes functioning in membrane fusion) in resistance to SCN. Experiments showed that SNARE functions in concert with a beta-glucosidase having homology to PEN2 and an ATP binding cassette transporter having homology to PEN3. This study provides novel information for the genetic improvement of soybean for enhanced disease resistance.



Vesicle transport||Soybean||Disease resistance||Soybean cyst nematode