Plants can acquire enhanced resistance to pathogens after treatment with necrotizing attackers, nonpathogenic root-colonizing pseudomonads, salicylic acid, beta-aminobutyric acid and many other natural or synthetic compounds. The induced resistance is often associated with an enhanced capacity to mobilize infection-induced cellular defence responses - a process called 'priming'. Although the phenomenon has been known for years, most progress in our understanding of priming has been made only recently. These studies show that priming often depends on the induced disease resistance key regulator NPR1 (also known as NIM1 or SAI1) and that priming has a major effect on the regulation of cellular plant defence responses.
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