A potato late blight resistance gene protects against multiple Phytophthora species by recognizing a broadly conserved RXLR-WY effector

Species of the genus Phytophthora - the plant killer - cause disease and reduce yields in many crop plants. Although many Resistance to Phytophthora infestans (Rpi) genes effective against potato late blight have been cloned, few have been cloned against other Phytophthora species. Most Rpi genes encode nucleotide-binding, leucine-rich repeat- containing (NLR) immune receptor proteins, that recognize RXLR effectors. However, whether NLR proteins can recognize RXLR effectors from multiple Phytophthora species has rarely been investigated. Here, we identified a new RXLR-WY effector AVRamr3 from P. infestans that is recognized by Rpi-amr3 from a wild Solanaceae species Solanum americanum. Rpi-amr3 associates with AVRamr3 in planta. AVRamr3 is broadly conserved in many different Phytophthora species, and the recognition of AVRamr3 homologs by Rpi-amr3 activates resistance against multiple Phytophthora pathogens, including the tobacco black shank disease and cacao black pod disease pathogens P. parasitica and P. palmivora. Rpi-amr3 is thus the first characterized resistance gene that acts against P. parasitica or P. palmivora. These findings suggest a novel path to redeploy known R genes against different important plant pathogens.