During the course of screening plants for novel antifungal activity, we found that a high-molecular-mass fraction of an extract from leaves of Engelmannia pinnatifida exhibited potent and broad-spectrum antifungal activity. In this study a 30 kDa protein from E. pinnatifida leaves was purified to homogeneity by ammonium sulphate precipitation, gel filtration, Mono-Q and C18 reverse-phase column chromatographies. The purified protein showed potent antifungal activity against various plant pathogens with as little as 50 ng. The N-terminal amino acid sequence of the purified protein was determined as XXTKFDFFTLALQXPAXF, where X indicates an unidentified residue. This sequence showed 35–50% sequence identity with purified style glycoproteins associated with self-incompatibility from wild tomato, tobacco and petunia, a phosphate-starvation-induced ribonuclease from cultured tomato cells and the SIR 63.4 kDa protein from yeast.

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