EDS1 complexes are not required for PRR responses and execute TNL-ETI from the nucleus in Nicotiana benthamiana

Zönnchen, Josua; Gantner, Johannes; Lapin, Dmitry; Barthel, Karen; Eschen-Lippold, Lennart; Erickson, Jessica L.; Villanueva, Sergio Landeo; Zantop, Stefan; Kretschmer, Carola; Joosten, Matthieu H.A.J.; Parker, Jane E.; Guerois, Raphael; Stuttmann, Johannes


Heterodimeric complexes incorporating the lipase-like proteins EDS1 with PAD4 or SAG101 are central hubs in plant innate immunity. EDS1 functions encompass signal relay from TIR domain-containing intracellular NLR-type immune receptors (TNLs) towards RPW8-type helper NLRs (RNLs) and, in Arabidopsis thaliana, bolstering of signaling and resistance mediated by cell-surface pattern recognition receptors (PRRs). Increasing evidence points to the activation of EDS1 complexes by small molecule binding. We used CRISPR/Cas-generated mutant lines and agroinfiltration-based complementation assays to interrogate functions of EDS1 complexes in Nicotiana benthamiana. We did not detect impaired PRR signaling in N. benthamiana lines deficient in EDS1 complexes or RNLs. Intriguingly, in assays monitoring functions of SlEDS1-NbEDS1 complexes in N. benthamiana, mutations within the SlEDS1 catalytic triad could abolish or enhance TNL immunity. Furthermore, nuclear EDS1 accumulation was sufficient for N. benthamiana TNL (Roq1) immunity. Reinforcing PRR signaling in Arabidopsis might be a derived function of the TNL/EDS1 immune sector. Although Solanaceae EDS1 functionally depends on catalytic triad residues in some contexts, our data do not support binding of a TNL-derived small molecule in the triad environment. Whether and how nuclear EDS1 activity connects to membrane pore-forming RNLs remains unknown.