Implications of carbon catabolite repression for plant–microbe interactions

Theophile Franzino, Hasna Boubakri, Tomislav Cernava, Danis Abrouk, Wafa Achouak, Sylvie Reverchon, William Nasser, Feth el Zahar Haichar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Carbon catabolite repression (CCR) plays a key role in many physiological and adaptive responses in a broad range of microorganisms that are commonly associated with eukaryotic hosts. When a mixture of different carbon sources is available, CCR, a global regulatory mechanism, inhibits the expression and activity of cellular processes associated with utilization of secondary carbon sources in the presence of the preferred carbon source. CCR is known to be executed by completely different mechanisms in different bacteria, yeast, and fungi. In addition to regulating catabolic genes, CCR also appears to play a key role in the expression of genes involved in plant–microbe interactions. Here, we present a detailed overview of CCR mechanisms in various bacteria. We highlight the role of CCR in beneficial as well as deleterious plant–microbe interactions based on the available literature. In addition, we explore the global distribution of known regulatory mechanisms within bacterial genomes retrieved from public repositories and within metatranscriptomes obtained from different plant rhizospheres. By integrating the available literature and performing targeted meta-analyses, we argue that CCR-regulated substrate use preferences of microorganisms should be considered an important trait involved in prevailing plant–microbe interactions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100272
JournalPlant Communications
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2022


  • carbon catabolite repression
  • carbon utilization
  • CCR
  • plant–microbe interaction
  • rhizosphere
  • substrate-use preferences

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


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