Dr. Beimi Cui published an article in Nature Communication


Dr. Beimi Cui and his colleagues published anresearch article titled S-nitrosylationof the zinc finger protein SRG1 regulates plantimmunity in NatureCommunication. Dr. Cui joinedthe Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Medicinal Plants (KLBMP) of JiangsuProvince as a post-doctoral scientist after he received his Ph.D. from theUniversity of Edinburg in 2016. His research is co-supervised by Dr. Gary Loakeat the University of Edinburg an Dr. Jihong Jiang, director of the KLBMP. Dr.Loake is specialized in his research in plant immunity signaling and also along term collaborator with Jiangsu Normal University. Nature Communication isone of the highest profile journals published by Nature publishing group. The article was accessible online on October 12, 2018.

The paper highlighted thenovel mechanism underlying the signal molecule Nitric Oxide (NO) involving inthe regulation of gene expression and plant resistance to diseases. The authorsdiscovered that the immunity regulator SRG1, a zinc-finger transcriptionfactor, is targeted by NO and positively regulate plant immune responses. NOinduced the elevated expression of SRG1 leading to increases in reactive oxygenspecies, cell death, and salicylic acid, all hallmarks of an enhanced immunity.SRG1 proteins can be biochemically altered by NO with a modification called S-nitrosylationand the modified SRG1 has different affinity to bind DNA affectingtranscriptional activity. The breakthrough provided insights into NO-mediatedplant immunity and hints for developing disease resistant crops.

Model for the function of SRG1 in plant immunity.