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Aminoacil-tRNA synthetases as targets for development of Agrobactericides intented for control of plant diseases caused by Xanthomonas species

Grant number: 16/03151-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2016
Effective date (End): July 31, 2018
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biophysics
Principal Investigator:Celso Eduardo Benedetti
Grantee:Gustavo Fernando Mercaldi
Home Institution: Centro Nacional de Pesquisa em Energia e Materiais (CNPEM). Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia, Inovações e Comunicações (Brasil). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:11/20468-1 - Molecular mechanisms involved in pathogen adaptation and virulence, host resistance and symptom development in citrus-bacteria interactions, AP.TEM


A growing demand for agricultural commodities has been largely driven by population growth, increase in per-capta incomes and use of biomass for energy production. In an scenario where factors including climate changes, increases in planting density and indiscriminate use of agrochemicals might lead to the emergence of more aggressive plant pathogens, the development of new agricultural defensives becomes key for the maintenance of the agricultural productivity. This new agricultural defensives should also meet the increasing social and regulatory demands for the use of products that are safer to humans and to the environment. The present project represents an effort to develop agrobactericides useful to control plant diseases caused by Xanthomonas pathogens. Members of the Xanthomonas genus harm hundreds of plant species, including crops of agronomical interest like citrus, rice, sugarcane, wheat, tomato, beans, grape and passion fruit. Presently available chemical control alternatives to fight Xanthomonas species have undesirable efficacy and/or environmental safety profiles. Thus, the enzymes methionyl- and prolyl-tRNA synthetases (MetRS e ProRS, respectively) where selected as targets for the development of new agrobactericides. tRNA synthetases are involved in the first step of protein translation and are largely validated targets for the development of microbicides. Both MetRS and ProRS have highly conserved catalytic sites among Xanthomonas spp and a remarkable divergence to enzymes from plants and humans. The target-based development of agrochemicals represents a promising option to the rational design of chemicals with selectivity for phytopathogens and with appropriate safety profiles.

Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
MERCALDI, GUSTAVO F.; D'ANTONIO, EDWARD L.; AGUESSI, ANNELIE; RODRIGUEZ, ANA; CORDEIRO, ARTUR T. Discovery of antichagasic inhibitors by high-throughput screening with Trypanosoma cruzi glucokinase. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters, v. 29, n. 15, p. 1948-1953, AUG 1 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
DE LIMA SILVA, CAIO CESAR; SHIMO, HUGO MASSAYOSHI; DE FELICIO, RAFAEL; MERCALDI, GUSTAVO FERNANDO; ROCCO, SILVANA APARECIDA; BENEDETTI, CELSO EDUARDO. Structure-function relationship of a citrus salicylate methylesterase and role of salicylic acid in citrus canker resistance. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, v. 9, MAR 7 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
MOTA, SABRINA G. R.; MERCALDI, GUSTAVO F.; PEREIRA, JOSE G. C.; OLIVEIRA, PAULO S. L.; RODRIGUEZ, ANA; CORDEIRO, ARTUR T. First Nonphosphorylated Inhibitors of Phosphoglucose Isomerase Identified by Chemical Library Screening. SLAS DISCOVERY, v. 23, n. 10, p. 1051-1059, DEC 2018. Web of Science Citations: 1.

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