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Improving Regulation Of Enzymatic And Non-Enzymatic Antioxidants And Stress-Related Gene Stimulation In Cucumber Mosaic Cucumovirus-Infected Cucumber Plants Treated With Glycine Betaine, Chitosan And Combination

Ahmed R. Sofy, Rehab A. Dawoud, Mahmoud R. Sofy, Heba I. Mohamed, Ahmed A. Hmed, Noha K. El-Dougdoug

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Cucumber mosaic cucumovirus (CMV) is a deadly plant virus that results in crop-yield losses with serious economic consequences. In recent years, environmentally friendly components have been developed to manage crop diseases as alternatives to chemical pesticides, including the use of natural compounds such as glycine betaine (GB) and chitosan (CHT), either alone or in combination. In the present study, the leaves of the cucumber plants were foliar-sprayed with GB and CHT—either alone or in combination—to evaluate their ability to induce resistance against CMV. The results showed a significant reduction in disease severity and CMV accumulation in plants treated with GB and CHT, either alone or in combination, compared to untreated plants (challenge control). In every treatment, growth indices, leaf chlorophylls content, phytohormones (i.e., indole acetic acid, gibberellic acid, salicylic acid and jasmonic acid), endogenous osmoprotectants (i.e., proline, soluble sugars and glycine betaine), non-enzymatic antioxidants (i.e., ascorbic acid, glutathione and phenols) and enzymatic antioxidants (i.e., superoxide dismutase, peroxidase, polyphenol oxidase, catalase, lipoxygenase, ascorbate peroxidase, glutathione reductase, chitinase and β-1,3 glucanase) of virus-infected plants were significantly increased. On the other hand, malondialdehyde and abscisic acid contents have been significantly reduced. Based on a gene expression study, all treated plants exhibited increased expression levels of some regulatory defense genes such as PR1 and PAL1. In conclusion, the combination of GB and CHT is the most effective treatment in alleviated virus infection. To our knowledge, this is the first report to demonstrate the induction of systemic resistance against CMV by using GB.