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Journal Cover   Plant Molecular Biology
  [SJR: 1.842]   [H-I: 121]   [10 followers]  Follow
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
   ISSN (Print) 1573-5028 - ISSN (Online) 0167-4412
   Published by Springer-Verlag Homepage  [2302 journals]
  • Characterization of a vacuolar processing enzyme expressed in Arachis
           diogoi in resistance responses against late leaf spot pathogen,
           Phaeoisariopsis personata
    • Abstract: Abstract Vacuolar processing enzymes are cysteine proteases responsible for maturation of vacuolar proteins. They have been shown to possess caspase-1-like activity, mediate cell death and display increased activity during pathogen infections. A transcript derived fragment corresponding to VPE was found to be up-regulated in a cDNA-AFLP analysis of host responses of a wild peanut, Arachis diogoi upon challenge from the late leaf spot pathogen Phaeoisariopsis personata, which was subsequently validated by q-PCR in a time course analysis, where susceptible peanut did not show its upregulation. In transient conditional and constitutive expression studies in tobacco leaves using agroinfiltration, we have observed that expression of AdVPE was associated with hypersensitive response (HR) like cell death. AdVPE expression was found to be high at 24 h post estradiol application and this was associated with the enhanced co-expression of molecular markers of HR cell death genes and genes for pathogenesis related proteins indicating that AdVPE positively regulates defense responses and its estradiol induced expression is sufficient for HR-like cell death in tobacco. We found that AdVPE expression was very strongly induced in response to sodium nitroprusside, which indicates its involvement in stress signaling. Induced expression of AdVPE in response to jasmonic acid and ethylene also indicates its involvement in an interconnected network of signaling. Transgenic tobacco plants ectopically expressing AdVPE exhibited enhanced resistance against Phytophthora parasitica var. nicotianae, Alternaria alternata var.  nicotianae and Rhizoctonia solani. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the heterologous expression of a pathogen induced VPE enhancing resistance to fungal pathogens with cell death phenomenon under transient expression.
      PubDate: 2015-04-17
  • Pea lectin receptor-like kinase functions in salinity adaptation without
           yield penalty, by alleviating osmotic and ionic stresses and upregulating
           stress-responsive genes
    • Abstract: Abstract Lectin receptor-like kinases (LecRLKs) are members of RLK family composed of lectin-like extracellular recognition domain, transmembrane domain and cytoplasmic kinase domain. LecRLKs are plasma membrane proteins believed to be involved in signal transduction. However, most of the members of the protein family even in plants have not been functionally well characterized. Herein, we show that Pisum sativum LecRLK (PsLecRLK) localized in plasma membrane systems and/or other regions of the cell and its transcript upregulated under salinity stress. Overexpression of PsLecRLK in transgenic tobacco plants confers salinity stress tolerance by alleviating both the ionic as well the osmotic component of salinity stress. The transgenic plants show better tissue compartmentalization of Na+ and higher ROS scavenging activity which probably results in lower membrane damage, improved growth and yield maintenance even under salinity stress. Also, expression of several genes involved in cellular homeostasis is perturbed by PsLecRLK overexpression. Alleviation of osmotic and ionic components of salinity stress along with reduced oxidative damage and upregulation of stress-responsive genes in transgenic plants under salinity stress conditions could be possible mechanism facilitating enhanced stress tolerance. This study presents PsLecRLK as a promising candidate for crop improvement and also opens up new avenue to investigate its signalling pathway.
      PubDate: 2015-04-12
  • Discovery, evaluation and distribution of haplotypes and new alleles of
           the Photoperiod - A1 gene in wheat
    • Abstract: Abstract Photoperiod response in wheat is determined to a large extent by the homoeologous series of Photoperiod 1 (Ppd1) genes. In this study, Ppd-A1 genomic sequences from the 5′ UTR and promoter region were analysed in 104 accessions of six tetraploid wheat species (Triticum dicoccoides, T. dicoccum, T. turgidum, T. polonicum, T. carthlicum, T. durum) and 102 accessions of six hexaploid wheat species (T. aestivum, T. compactum, T. sphaerococcum, T. spelta, T. macha, T. vavilovii). This data was supplemented with in silico analysis of publicly available sequences from 46 to 193 accessions of diploid and tetraploid wheat, respectively. Analysis of a region of the Ppd-A1 promoter identified thirteen haplotypes, which were divided in two haplogroups. Distribution of the Ppd-A1 haplogroups and haplotypes in wheat species, and their geographical distributions were analysed. Polymerase chain reaction combined with a heteroduplex mobility assay was subsequently used to efficiently discriminate between Ppd-A1 alleles, allowing identification of the Ppd-A1b haplotypes and haplogroups. The causes of anomalous migration of Ppd-A1 heteroduplexes in gels were found to be the localization of mismatches relative to the center of fragment, the cumulative effect of neighbouring polymorphic sites, and the location of mismatches within A/T-tracts. Analysis of the Ppd-A1 5′ UTR in hexaploid wheat revealed a novel mutation within the “photoperiod critical” region in a subset of T. compactum accessions. This putative photoperiod insensitive allele (designated Ppd-A1a.4) includes a 684 bp deletion which spans region in common with deletions previously identified in other photoperiod insensitive Ppd1 alleles.
      PubDate: 2015-04-08
  • The cytosolic branched-chain aminotransferases of Arabidopsis thaliana
           influence methionine supply, salvage and glucosinolate metabolism
    • Abstract: Abstract Arabidopsis thaliana possesses six branched-chain aminotransferases (BCAT1–6). Previous studies revealed that some members of this protein family are involved in the biosynthesis of branched-chain amino acids and/or in the Met chain elongation pathway, the initial steps towards the biosynthesis of Met-derived glucosinolates. We now analyzed branched-chain aminotransferase 6 (BCAT6). In vivo GFP-tagging experiments strongly suggest this enzyme to be localized to the cytosol. Substrate specificity assays performed with recombinant enzyme revealed that BCAT6 transaminates Val, Leu and Ile as well as the corresponding 2-oxo acids but also transaminates Met and its cognate ketoacid 4-methyl-2-oxobutanoate. We established single (bcat6-1), double (bcat4-2/bcat6-1) and triple (bcat3-1/bcat4-2/bcat6-1) mutants involving BCAT6 with the latter exhibiting a clear macroscopic phenotype with smaller plants and abnormal leaf morphology. Metabolite profiling of these mutants demonstrated that BCAT6 can contribute to Met chain elongation with the triple mutant line lacking BCAT3, 4 and 6 showing a dramatic reduction of Met-derived glucosinolate species down to 32 and 14 % of wild-type levels in plant foliage and seeds, respectively. This drop in glucosinolate levels is accompanied by a 46-fold increase of free Met, demonstrating the important role of the three branched-chain aminotransferases in converting Met to its 2-oxo acid for glucosinolate chain elongation. In addition, we determined the relative amounts of 5′-deoxy-5′-methylthioadenosine, an intermediate of the Met recycling pathway. This metabolite accumulated to relative high amounts in the absence of the cytosolic BCAT4 and BCAT6, suggesting that cytosolic Met salvage also contributes to the biosynthesis of glucosinolates.
      PubDate: 2015-04-08
  • Association analysis of genes involved in maize ( Zea mays L.) root
           development with seedling and agronomic traits under contrasting nitrogen
    • Abstract: Abstract A better understanding of the genetic control of root development might allow one to develop lines with root systems with the potential to adapt to soils with limited nutrient availability. For this purpose, an association study (AS) panel consisting of 74 diverse set of inbred maize lines were screened for seedling root traits and adult plant root traits under two contrasting nitrogen (N) levels (low and high N). Allele re-sequencing of RTCL, RTH3, RUM1, and RUL1 genes related to root development was carried out for AS panel lines. Association analysis was carried out between individual polymorphisms, and both seedling and adult plant traits, while controlling for spurious associations due to population structure and kinship relations. Based on the SNPs identified in RTCL, RTH3, RUM1, and RUL1, lines within the AS panel were grouped into 16, 9, 22, and 7 haplotypes, respectively. Association analysis revealed several polymorphisms within root genes putatively associated with the variability in seedling root and adult plant traits development under contrasting N levels. The highest number of significantly associated SNPs with seedling root traits were found in RTCL (19 SNPs) followed by RUM1 (4 SNPs) and in case of RTH3 and RUL1, two and three SNPs, respectively, were significantly associated with root traits. RTCL and RTH3 were also found to be associated with grain yield. Thus considerable allelic diversity is present within the candidate genes studied and can be utilized to develop functional markers that allow identification of maize lines with improved root architecture and yield under N stress conditions.
      PubDate: 2015-04-04
  • Overexpression of the carbohydrate binding module of strawberry expansin2
           in Arabidopsis thaliana modifies plant growth and cell wall metabolism
    • Abstract: Abstract Several cell wall enzymes are carbohydrate active enzymes that contain a putative Carbohydrate Binding Module (CBM) in their structures. The main function of these non-catalitic modules is to facilitate the interaction between the enzyme and its substrate. Expansins are non-hydrolytic proteins present in the cell wall, and their structure includes a CBM in the C-terminal that bind to cell wall polymers such as cellulose, hemicelluloses and pectins. We studied the ability of the Expansin2 CBM (CBMFaEXP2) from strawberry (Fragaria x ananassa, Duch) to modify the cell wall of Arabidopsis thaliana. Plants overexpressing CBMFaEXP2 were characterized phenotypically and biochemically. Transgenic plants were taller than wild type, possibly owing to a faster growth of the main stem. Cell walls of CBMFaEXP2-expressing plants were thicker and contained higher amount of pectins. Lower activity of a set of enzymes involved in cell wall degradation (PG, β-Gal, β-Xyl) was found, and the expression of the corresponding genes (AtPG, Atβ-Gal, Atβ-Xyl5) was reduced also. In addition, a decrease in the expression of two A. thaliana Expansin genes (AtEXP5 and AtEXP8) was observed. Transgenic plants were more resistant to Botrytis cinerea infection than wild type, possibly as a consequence of higher cell wall integrity. Our results support the hypothesis that the overexpression of a putative CBM is able to modify plant cell wall structure leading to modulation of wall loosening and plant growth. These findings might offer a tool to controlling physiological processes where cell wall disassembly is relevant, such as fruit softening.
      PubDate: 2015-04-03
  • Differential regulation of genes by retrotransposons in rice promoters
    • Abstract: Abstract Rice genome harbors genes and promoters with retrotransposon insertions. There is very little information about their function. The effect of retrotransposon insertions in four rice promoter regions on gene regulation, was investigated using promoter-reporter gene constructs with and without retrotransposons. Differences in expression levels of gus and egfp reporter genes in forward orientation and rfp in reverse orientation were evaluated in rice plants with transient expression employing quantitative RT-PCR analysis, histochemical GUS staining, and eGFP and RFP fluorescent microscopy. The presence of SINE in the promoter 1 (P1) resulted in higher expression levels of the reporter genes, whereas the presence of LINE in P2 or gypsy LTR retrotransposon in P3 reduced expression of the reporter genes. Furthermore, the SINE in P1 acts as an enhancer in contrast with the LINE in P2 and the gypsy LTR retrotransposon in P3 which act as silencers. CTAA and CGG motifs in these retrotransposons are the likely candidates for the downregulation compared to TCTT motif (SINE) which is a candidate for the upregulation of gene expression. The effect of retrotransposons on gene regulation correlated with the earlier investigation of conservation patterns of these four retrotransposon insertions in several rice accessions implying their evolutionary significance.
      PubDate: 2015-04-01
  • TaRAR1 and TaSGT1 associate with TaHsp90 to function in bread wheat (
           Triticum aestivum L.) seedling growth and stripe rust resistance
    • Abstract: Abstract RAR1 and SGT1 are important co-chaperones of Hsp90. We previously showed that TaHsp90.1 is required for wheat seedling growth, and that TaHsp90.2 and TaHsp90.3 are essential for resistance (R) gene mediated resistance to stripe rust fungus. Here, we report the characterization of TaRAR1 and TaSGT1 genes in bread wheat. TaRAR1 and TaSGT1 each had three homoeologs, which were located on wheat groups 2 and 3 chromosomes, respectively. Strong inhibition of seedling growth was observed after silencing TaSGT1 but not TaRAR1. In contrast, decreasing the expression of TaRAR1 or TaSGT1 could all compromise R gene mediated resistance to stripe rust fungus infection. Protein–protein interactions were found among TaRAR1, TaSGT1 and TaHsp90. The N-terminus of TaHsp90, the CHORD-I and CHORD-II domains of TaRAR1 and the CS domain of TaSGT1 may be instrumental for the interactions among the three proteins. Based on this work and our previous study on TaHsp90, we speculate that the TaSGT1–TaHsp90.1 interaction is important for maintaining bread wheat seedling growth. The TaRAR1–TaSGT1–TaHsp90.2 and TaRAR1–TaSGT1–TaHsp90.3 interactions are involved in controlling the resistance to stripe rust disease. The new information obtained here should aid further functional investigations of TaRAR1–TaSGT1–TaHsp90 complexes in regulating bread wheat growth and disease resistance.
      PubDate: 2015-04-01
  • Telomere dynamics in the lower plant Physcomitrella patens
    • Abstract: Abstract A comparative approach in biology is needed to assess the universality of rules governing this discipline. In plant telomere research, most of the key principles were established based on studies in only single model plant, Arabidopsis thaliana. These principles include the absence of telomere shortening during plant development and the corresponding activity of telomerase in dividing (meristem) plant cells. Here we examine these principles in Physcomitrella patens as a representative of lower plants. To follow telomerase expression, we first characterize the gene coding for the telomerase reverse transcriptase subunit PpTERT in P. patens, for which only incomplete prediction has been available so far. In protonema cultures of P. patens, growing by filament apical cell division, the proportion of apical (dividing) cells was quantified and telomere length, telomerase expression and activity were determined. Our results show telomere stability and demonstrate proportionality of telomerase activity and expression with the number of apical cells. In addition, we analyze telomere maintenance in mre11, rad50, nbs1, ku70 and lig4 mutants of P. patens and compare the impact of these mutations in double-strand-break (DSB) repair pathways with earlier observations in corresponding A. thaliana mutants. Telomere phenotypes are absent and DSB repair kinetics is not affected in P. patens mutants for DSB factors involved in non-homologous end joining (NHEJ). This is compliant with the overall dominance of homologous recombination over NHEJ pathways in the moss, contrary to the inverse situation in flowering plants.
      PubDate: 2015-04-01
  • Dr. Leon S. Dure, III (1931–2014)
    • PubDate: 2015-04-01
  • Gene knockout of glutathione reductase 3 results in increased sensitivity
           to salt stress in rice
    • Abstract: Abstract Glutathione reductase (GR) is one of important antioxidant enzymes in plants. This enzyme catalyzes the reduction of glutathione disulfide (GSSG) to reduced glutathione (GSH) with the accompanying oxidation of NADPH. Previously, we showed that salt-stress-responsive GR3 is a functional protein localized in chloroplasts and mitochondria in rice. To learn more about the role of GR3 in salt-stress tolerance, we investigated the response to 100 mM NaCl treatment in wild-type rice (WT); GR3 knockout mutant of rice (gr3); and the functional gr3-complementation line (C1). Rice GR3 was primarily expressed in roots at the seedling stage and ubiquitously expressed in all tissues except the sheath at heading stage. GR3 promoter-GUS was expressed in the vascular cylinder and cortex of root tissues in rice seedlings, vascular tissue of nodes, embryo and aleurone layer of seeds, and young flowers. Under both normal and salt-stress conditions, total GR activity was decreased by 20 % in gr3. Oxidative stress, indicated by malondialdehyde content, was greater in gr3 than the WT under salt stress. As compared with the WT, gr3 was sensitive to salt and methyl viologen; it showed inhibited growth, decreased maximal efficiency of photosystem II, decreased GSH and GSSG contents, and the ratio of GSH to GSSG. Conversely, the gr3-complementation line C1 rescued the tolerance to methyl viologen and salinity and recovered the growth and physiological damage caused by salinity. These results reveal that GR3 plays an important role in salt stress tolerance by regulating the GSH redox state in rice.
      PubDate: 2015-04-01
  • An abscisic acid inducible Arabidopsis MAPKKK, MAPKKK18 regulates leaf
           senescence via its kinase activity
    • Abstract: Abstract Abscisic acid (ABA) is a phytohormone that regulates many physiological functions, such as plant growth, development and stress responses. The MAPK cascade plays an important role in ABA signal transduction. Several MAPK and MAPKK molecules are reported to function in ABA signaling; however, there have been few studies related to the identification of MAPKKK upstream of MAPKK in ABA signaling. In this study, we show that an Arabidopsis MAPKKK, MAPKKK18 functions in ABA signaling. The expression of MAPKKK18 was induced by ABA treatment. Yeast two-hybrid analysis revealed that MAPKKKK18 interacted with MKK3, which interacted with C-group MAPK, MPK1/2/7. Immunoprecipitated kinase assay showed that the 3xFlag-tagged MAPKKK18, expressed in Arabidopsis plants, was activated when treated with ABA. These results indicate the possibility that the MAPK cascade is composed of MAPKKK18, MKK3 and MPK1/2/7 in ABA signaling. The transgenic plants overexpressing MAPKKK18 (35S:MAPKKK18) and its kinase negative mutant (35S:MAPKKK18 KN) were generated, and their growth was monitored. Compared with the WT plant, 35S:MAPKKK18 and 35S:MAPKKK18 KN showed smaller and bigger phenotypes, respectively. Senescence of the rosette leaves was promoted in 35S:MAPKKK18, but suppressed in 35S:MAPKKK18 KN. Furthermore, ABA-induced leaf senescence was accelerated in 35S:MAPKKK18. These results suggest that MAPKKK18 controls the plant growth by adjusting the timing of senescence via its protein kinase activity in ABA dependent manners.
      PubDate: 2015-04-01
  • Genetic and epigenetic modifications to the BBAA component of common wheat
           during its evolutionary history at the hexaploid level
    • Abstract: Abstract The formation and evolution of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L., genome BBAADD) involves allopolyploidization events at two ploidy levels. Whether the two ploidy levels (tetraploidy and hexaploidy) have impacted the BBAA subgenomes differentially remains largely unknown. We have reported recently that extensive and distinct modifications of transcriptome expression occurred to the BBAA component of common wheat relative to the evolution of gene expression at the tetraploid level in Triticum turgidum. As a step further, here we analyzed the genetic and cytosine DNA methylation differences between an extracted tetraploid wheat (ETW) harboring genome BBAA that is highly similar to the BBAA subgenomes of common wheat, and a set of diverse T. turgidum collections, including both wild and cultivated genotypes. We found that while ETW had no significantly altered karyotype from T. turgidum, it diverged substantially from the later at both the nucleotide sequence level and in DNA methylation based on molecular marker assay of randomly sampled loci across the genome. In particular, ETW is globally less cytosine-methylated than T. turgidum, consistent with earlier observations of a generally higher transcriptome expression level in ETW than in T. turgidum. Together, our results suggest that genome evolution at the allohexaploid level has caused extensive genetic and DNA methylation modifications to the BBAA subgenomes of common wheat, which are distinctive from those accumulated at the tetraploid level in both wild and cultivated T. turgidum genotypes.
      PubDate: 2015-03-26
  • A cytochrome P450, OsDSS1, is involved in growth and drought stress
           responses in rice ( Oryza sativa L.)
    • Abstract: Abstract Cytochrome P450s are among the largest protein coding gene families in plant genomes. However, majority of the genes remain uncharacterized. Here, we report the characterization of dss1, a rice mutant showing dwarfism and reduced grain size. The dss1 phenotype is caused by a non-synonymous point mutation we identified in DSS1, which is member of a P450 gene cluster located on rice chromosome 3 and corresponds to the previously reported CYP96B4/SD37 gene. Phenotypes of several dwarf mutants characterized in rice are associated with defects in the biosynthesis or perception of the phytohormones gibberellins (GAs) and brassinosteroids (BRs). However, both GA and BR failed to rescue the dss1 phenotype. Hormone profiling revealed the accumulation of abscisic acid (ABA) and ABA metabolites, as well as significant reductions in GA19 and GA53 levels, precursors of the bioactive GA1, in the mutant. The dss1 contents of cytokinin and auxins were not significantly different from wild-type plants. Consistent with the accumulation of ABA and metabolites, germination and early growth was delayed in dss1, which also exhibited an enhanced tolerance to drought. Additionally, expressions of members of the DSS1/CYP96B gene cluster were regulated by drought stress and exogenous ABA. RNA-seq-based transcriptome profiling revealed, among others, that cell wall-related genes and genes involved in lipid metabolism were up- and down-regulated in dss1, respectively. Taken together, these findings suggest that DSS1 mediates growth and stress responses in rice by fine-tuning GA-to-ABA balance, and might as well play a role in lipid metabolism.
      PubDate: 2015-03-24
  • A cis -regulatory module activating transcription in the suspensor
           contains five cis -regulatory elements
    • Abstract: Abstract Little is known about the molecular mechanisms by which the embryo proper and suspensor of plant embryos activate specific gene sets shortly after fertilization. We analyzed the upstream region of the Scarlet Runner Bean (Phaseolus coccineus) G564 gene in order to understand how genes are activated specifically in the suspensor during early embryo development. Previously, we showed that a 54-bp fragment of the G564 upstream region is sufficient for suspensor transcription and contains at least three required cis-regulatory sequences, including the 10-bp motif (5′-GAAAAGCGAA-3′), the 10 bp-like motif (5′-GAAAAACGAA-3′), and Region 2 motif (partial sequence 5′-TTGGT-3′). Here, we use site-directed mutagenesis experiments in transgenic tobacco globular-stage embryos to identify two additional cis-regulatory elements within the 54-bp cis-regulatory module that are required for G564 suspensor transcription: the Fifth motif (5′-GAGTTA-3′) and a third 10-bp-related sequence (5′-GAAAACCACA-3′). Further deletion of the 54-bp fragment revealed that a 47-bp fragment containing the five motifs (the 10-bp, 10-bp-like, 10-bp-related, Region 2 and Fifth motifs) is sufficient for suspensor transcription, and represents a cis-regulatory module. A consensus sequence for each type of motif was determined by comparing motif sequences shown to activate suspensor transcription. Phylogenetic analyses suggest that the regulation of G564 is evolutionarily conserved. A homologous cis-regulatory module was found upstream of the G564 ortholog in the Common Bean (Phaseolus vulgaris), indicating that the regulation of G564 is evolutionarily conserved in closely related bean species.
      PubDate: 2015-03-22
  • Regulation of FATTY ACID ELONGATION1 expression in embryonic and vascular
           tissues of Brassica napus
    • Abstract: Abstract The expression of the FATTY ACID ELONGATION1 genes was characterised to provide insight into the regulation of very long chain fatty acid (VLCFA) biosynthesis in Brassica napus embryos. Each of the two rapeseed homoeologous genes (Bn-FAE1.1 and Bn-FAE1.2) encoding isozymes of 3-keto-acylCoA synthase, a subunit of the cytoplasmic acyl-CoA elongase complex that controls the production of elongated fatty acids, are expressed predominantly in developing seeds. The proximal regions of the Bn-FAE1.1 and Bn-FAE1.2 promoters possess strong sequence identity suggesting that transcriptional control of expression is mediated by this region which contains putative cis-elements characteristic of those found in the promoters of genes expressed in embryo and endosperm. Histochemical staining of rapeseed lines expressing Bn-FAE1.1 promoter:reporter gene fusions revealed a strong expression in the embryo cotyledon and axis throughout the maturation phase. Quantitative analyses revealed the region, −331 to −149, exerts a major control on cotyledon specific expression and the level of expression. A second region, −640 to −475, acts positively to enhance expression levels and extends expression of Bn-FAE1.1 into the axis and hypocotyl but also acts negatively to repress expression in the root meristem. The expression of the Bn-FAE1.1 gene was not restricted to the seed but was also detected in the vascular tissues of germinating seedlings and mature plants in the fascicular cambium tissue present in roots, stem and leaf petiole. We propose that Bn-FAE1.1 expression in vascular tissue may contribute VLCFA for barrier lipid synthesis and reflects the ancestral function of FAE1 encoded 3-keto-acylCoA synthase.
      PubDate: 2015-03-21
  • Expression of SOD and APX genes positively regulates secondary cell wall
           biosynthesis and promotes plant growth and yield in Arabidopsis under salt
    • Abstract: Abstract Abiotic stresses cause accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), such as hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) in plants. Sophisticated mechanisms are required to maintain optimum level of H2O2 that acts as signalling molecule regulating adaptive response to salt stress. CuZn-superoxide dismutase (CuZn-SOD) and ascorbate peroxidase (APX) constitute first line of defence against oxidative stress. In the present study, PaSOD and RaAPX genes from Potentilla atrosanguinea and Rheum australe, respectively were overexpressed individually as well as in combination in Arabidopsis thaliana. Interestingly, PaSOD and dual transgenic lines exhibit enhanced lignin deposition in their vascular bundles with altered S:G ratio under salt stress. RNA-seq analysis revealed that expression of PaSOD gene in single and dual transgenics positively regulates expression of lignin biosynthesis genes and transcription factors (NACs, MYBs, C3Hs and WRKY), leading to enhanced and ectopic deposition of lignin in vascular tissues with larger xylem fibres and alters S:G ratio, as well. In addition, transgenic plants exhibit growth promotion, higher biomass production and increased yield under salt stress as compared to wild type plants. Our results suggest that in dual transgenics, ROS generated during salt stress gets converted into H2O2 by SOD and its optimum level was maintained by APX. This basal level of H2O2 acts as messenger for transcriptional activation of lignin biosynthesis in vascular tissue, which provides mechanical strength to plants. These findings reveal an important role of PaSOD and RaAPX in enhancing salt tolerance of transgenic Arabidopsis via increased accumulation of compatible solutes and by regulating lignin biosynthesis.
      PubDate: 2015-03-10
  • A temperature induced lipocalin gene from Medicago falcata ( MfTIL1 )
           confers tolerance to cold and oxidative stress
    • Abstract: Abstract Temperature-induced lipocalins (TIL) are plasmalemma-localized proteins and responsive to environmental stresses. Physiological functions of MfTIL1 from Medicago sativa subsp. falcata (L.) Arcang. (hereafter falcata), a forage legume with cold and drought tolerance, were investigated in this study. MfTIL1 expression was greatly induced by 4–96 h of cold treatment, while transcript levels of the orthologs in Medicago truncatula, a model legume plant with lower cold tolerance than falcata, were reduced or not altered within 48–96 h. MfTIL1 expression was not responsive to dehydration and salinity. Compared to the wild type, transgenic tobacco plants overexpressing MfTIL1 had lower temperature (LT50) that resulted in 50 % lethal and elevated survival rate in response to freezing, elevated F v/F m and decreased ion leakage after treatments with chilling, high light and methyl viologen (MV). H2O2 and O2 − were less accumulated in transgenic plants than in the wild type after treatments with chilling, high light and MV, while antioxidant enzyme activities showed no difference between the two types of plants prior to or following treatments. Higher transcript levels of NtDREB3 and NtDREB4 genes were observed in transgenic plants than in the wild type under non-stressed conditions, but higher transcript levels of NtDREB1, NtDREB2, NtDREB4 and NtCOR15a genes under chilling conditions. It is suggested that MfTIL1 plays an important role in plant tolerance to cold and oxidative stress through promoted scavenging of reactive oxygen species and up-regulating expression of multiple cold responsive genes.
      PubDate: 2015-03-06
  • Ectopic expression of a phytochrome B gene from Chinese cabbage ( Brassica
           rapa L. ssp. pekinensis ) in Arabidopsis thaliana promotes seedling
           de-etiolation, dwarfing in mature plants, and delayed flowering
    • Abstract: Abstract Phytochrome B (phyB) is an essential red light receptor that predominantly mediates seedling de-etiolation, shade-avoidance response, and flowering time. In this study, we isolate a full-length cDNA of PHYB, designated BrPHYB, from Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa L. ssp. pekinensis), and we find that BrphyB protein has high amino acid sequence similarity and the closest evolutionary relationship to Arabidopsis thaliana phyB (i.e., AtphyB). Quantitative reverse transcription (RT)-PCR results indicate that the BrPHYB gene is ubiquitously expressed in different tissues under all light conditions. Constitutive expression of the BrPHYB gene in A. thaliana significantly enhances seedling de-etiolation under red- and white-light conditions, and causes dwarf stature in mature plants. Unexpectedly, overexpression of BrPHYB in transgenic A. thaliana resulted in reduced expression of gibberellins biosynthesis genes and delayed flowering under short-day conditions, whereas AtPHYB overexpression caused enhanced expression of FLOWERING LOCUS T and earlier flowering. Our results suggest that BrphyB might play an important role in regulating the development of Chinese cabbage. BrphyB and AtphyB have conserved functions during de-etiolation and vegetative plant growth and divergent functions in the regulation of flowering time.
      PubDate: 2015-02-28
  • Identification of tapetum-specific genes by comparing global gene
           expression of four different male sterile lines in Brassica oleracea
    • Abstract: Abstract The tapetum plays an important role in anther development by providing necessary enzymes and nutrients for pollen development. However, it is difficult to identify tapetum-specific genes on a large-scale because of the difficulty of separating tapetum cells from other anther tissues. Here, we reported the identification of tapetum-specific genes by comparing the gene expression patterns of four male sterile (MS) lines of Brassica oleracea. The abortive phenotypes of the four MS lines revealed different defects in tapetum and pollen development but normal anther wall development when observed by transmission electron microscopy. These tapetum displayed continuous defective characteristics throughout the anther developmental stages. The transcriptome from flower buds, covering all anther developmental stages, was analyzed and bioinformatics analyses exploring tapetum development-related genes were performed. We identified 1,005 genes differentially expressed in at least one of the MS lines and 104 were non-pollen expressed genes (NPGs). Most of the identified NPGs were tapetum-specific genes considering that anther walls were normally developed in all four MS lines. Among the 104 NPGs, 22 genes were previously reported as being involved in tapetum development. We further separated the expressed NPGs into different developmental stages based on the MS defects. The data obtained in this study are not only informative for research on tapetum development in B. oleracea, but are also useful for genetic pathway research in other related species.
      PubDate: 2015-02-25
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