The suppression of WRKY44 by GIGANTEA-miR172 pathway is involved in drought response of Arabidopsis thaliana.
ABSTRACT: Water availability is an important environmental factor that controls flowering time. Many plants accelerate flowering under drought conditions, a phenomenon called drought escape. Four pathways are involved in controlling flowering time, but which ones participate in drought escape is not yet known. In this study, plants with loss-of-function mutations of GIGANTEA (GI) and CONSTANS (CO) exhibited abnormal drought-escape phenotypes. The peak mRNA levels of GI and FKF1 (Flavin-binding Kelch domain F box protein 1) and the mRNA levels of CO and FT (Flowering locus T) changed under drought stress. The microRNA factor miRNA172E was up-regulated by drought stress, and its up-regulation was dependent on GI, while other miRNA172s were not. Water-loss analyses indicated that gi mutants were more sensitive while miRNA172 over-expressing (miRNA172-OX) plants were less so to drought stress than wild-type plants. Digital gene expression and real-time PCR analyses showed that WRKY44 was down-regulated by GI and miRNA172. The WRKY44 protein could interact with TOE1 (a target of miRNA172) in a yeast two-hybrid system. We proposed that GI-miRNA172-WRKY44 may regulate drought escape and drought tolerance by affecting sugar signaling in Arabidopsis.
Project description:Plants flower in an appropriate season to allow sufficient vegetative development and position flower development in favorable environments. In Arabidopsis, CONSTANS (CO) and FLAVIN-BINDING KELCH REPEAT F-BOX1 (FKF1) promote flowering by inducing FLOWER LOCUS T (FT) expression in the long-day afternoon. The CO protein is present in the morning but could not activate FT expression due to unknown negative mechanisms, which prevent premature flowering before the day length reaches a threshold. Here, we report that TARGET OF EAT1 (TOE1) and related proteins interact with the activation domain of CO and CO-like (COL) proteins and inhibit CO activity. TOE1 binds to the FT promoter near the CO-binding site, and reducing TOE function results in a morning peak of the FT mRNA. In addition, TOE1 interacts with the LOV domain of FKF1 and likely interferes with the FKF1-CO interaction, resulting in partial degradation of the CO protein in the afternoon to prevent premature flowering.
Project description:Many plants measure changes in day length to synchronize their flowering time with appropriate seasons for maximum reproductive success. In Arabidopsis, the day-length-dependent regulation of Constans (CO) protein stability is crucial to induce flowering locus T (FT) expression for flowering in long days. The flavin-binding, KELCH repeat, F-box1 (FKF1) protein binds to CO protein specifically in the long-day afternoon and stabilizes it, although the mechanism remains unknown. Here we demonstrated that the FKF1-interacting proteins Gigantea (GI) and Zeitlupe (ZTL) are involved in CO stability regulation. First, our immunoprecipitation-mass spectrometry analysis of FKF1 revealed that FKF1 forms an S-phase kinase-associated protein 1 (Skp1)/Cullin(CUL)/F-box complex through interactions with Arabidopsis Skp1-like 1 (ASK1), ASK2, and CUL1 proteins and mainly interacts with GI protein in vivo. GI interacts with CO directly and indirectly through FKF1. Unexpectedly, the gi mutation increases the CO protein levels in the morning in long days. This gi-dependent destabilization of CO protein was cancelled by the fkf1 mutation. These results suggest that there are other factors likely influenced by both gi and fkf1 mutations that also control CO stability. We found that ZTL, which interacts with GI and FKF1, may be one such factor. ZTL also interacts with CO in vivo. The CO protein profile in the ztl mutant resembles that in the gi mutant, indicating that ZTL activity also may be changed in the gi mutant. Our findings suggest the presence of balanced regulation among FKF1, GI, and ZTL on CO stability regulation for the precise control of flowering time.
Project description:Root knot nematodes (RKNs) penetrate into the root vascular cylinder, triggering morphogenetic changes to induce galls, de novo formed 'pseudo-organs' containing several giant cells (GCs). Distinctive gene repression events observed in early gall/GCs development are thought to be mediated by post-transcriptional silencing via microRNAs (miRNAs), a process that is far from being fully characterized. Arabidopsis thaliana backgrounds with altered activities based on target 35S::MIMICRY172 (MIM172), 35S::TARGET OF EARLY ACTIVATION TAGGED 1 (TOE1)-miR172-resistant (35S::TOE1R ) and mutant (flowering locus T-10 (ft-10)) lines were used for functional analysis of nematode infective and reproductive parameters. The GUS-reporter lines, MIR172A-E::GUS, treated with auxin (IAA) and an auxin-inhibitor (a-(phenyl ethyl-2-one)-indole-3-acetic acid (PEO-IAA)), together with the MIR172C AuxRE::GUS line with two mutated auxin responsive elements (AuxREs), were assayed for nematode-dependent gene expression. Arabidopsis thaliana backgrounds with altered expression of miRNA172, TOE1 or FT showed lower susceptibility to the RKNs and smaller galls and GCs. MIR172C-D::GUS showed restricted promoter activity in galls/GCs that was regulated by auxins through auxin-responsive factors. IAA induced their activity in galls while PEO-IAA treatment and mutations in AuxRe motifs abolished it. The results showed that the regulatory module miRNA172/TOE1/FT plays an important role in correct GCs and gall development, where miRNA172 is modulated by auxins.
Project description:Precise timing of CONSTANS (CO) gene expression is necessary for day-length discrimination for photoperiodic flowering. The FLAVIN-BINDING, KELCH REPEAT, F-BOX 1 (FKF1), and GIGANTEA (GI) proteins regulate CO transcription in Arabidopsis. We demonstrate that FKF1 and GI proteins form a complex in a blue-light-dependent manner. The timing of this interaction regulates the timing of daytime CO expression. FKF1 function is dependent on GI, which interacts with a CO repressor, CYCLING DOF FACTOR 1 (CDF1), and controls CDF1 stability. GI, FKF1, and CDF1 proteins associate with CO chromatin. Thus, the FKF1-GI complex forms on the CO promoter in late afternoon to regulate CO expression, providing a mechanistic view of how the coincidence of light with circadian timing regulates photoperiodic flowering.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The initiation of flowering transition in rice (Oryza sativa) is a complex process regulated by genes and environment. In particular, drought can interfere with flowering; therefore, many plants hasten this process to shorten their life cycle under water scarcity, and this is known as drought-escape response. However, rice has other strategies; for example, drought stress can delay flowering instead of accelerating it. RICE CENTRORADIALIS 1 (RCN1) is a TERMINAL FLOWER-like gene that influences rice flowering transition and spike differentiation. It interacts with 14-3-3 proteins and transcription factor OsFD1 to form a florigen repression complex that suppresses flowering transition in rice. RESULTS:In this study, we explored the role of RCN1 in the molecular pathway of drought-regulated flowering transition. The rcn1 mutant plants displayed early heading under both normal water and drought stress conditions, and they were more insensitive to drought stress than the wild-type plants. Abscisic acid (ABA) signaling-mediated drought-induced RCN1 is involved in this process. CONCLUSIONS:Thus, RCN1 plays an important role in the process of drought stress inhibiting flowering transition. It may worked by suppressing the protein function rather than transcription of HEADING DATE 3a.
Project description:In potato plants, the phloem-mobile miR172 is involved in the sugar-dependent transmission of flower and tuber inducing signal transduction pathways and a clear link between solute transport and the induction of flowering and tuberization was demonstrated. The sucrose transporter StSUT4 seems to play an important role in the photoperiod-dependent triggering of both developmental processes, flowering and tuberization, and the phenotype of <i>StSUT4</i>-inhibited potato plants is reminiscent to miR172 overexpressing plants. The first aim of this study was the determination of the level of miR172 in sink and source leaves of <i>StSUT4</i>-silenced as well as <i>StSUT4</i>-overexpressing plants in comparison to <i>Solanum tuberosum</i> ssp. Andigena wild type plants. The second aim was to investigate the effect of sugars on the level of miRNA172 in whole cut leaves, as well as in whole in vitro plantlets that were supplemented with exogenous sugars. Experiments clearly show a sucrose-dependent induction of the level of mature miR172 in short time as well as long time experiments. A sucrose-dependent accumulation of miR172 was also measured in mature leaves of <i>StSUT4</i>-silenced plants where sucrose export is delayed and sucrose accumulates at the end of the light period.
Project description:Optimizing flowering time is crucial for maximizing crop productivity, but gaps remain in the knowledge of the mechanisms underpinning temperate legume flowering. Medicago, like winter annual Arabidopsis, accelerates flowering after exposure to extended cold (vernalization, V) followed by long-day (LD) photoperiods. In Arabidopsis, photoperiodic flowering is triggered through CO, a photoperiodic switch that directly activates the FT gene encoding a mobile florigen and potent activator of flowering. In Arabidopsis, several CYCLING DOF FACTORs (CDFs), including AtCDF1, act redundantly to repress CO and thus FT expression, until their removal in LD by a blue-light-induced F-BOX1/GIGANTEA (FKF1/GI) complex. Medicago possesses a homolog of FT, MtFTa1, which acts as a strong activator of flowering. However, the regulation of MtFTa1 does not appear to involve a CO-like gene. Nevertheless, work in pea suggests that CDFs may still regulate flowering time in temperate legumes. Here, we analyze the function of Medicago MtCDF genes with a focus on MtCDFd1_1 in flowering time and development. MtCDFd1_1 causes strong delays to flowering when overexpressed in Arabidopsis and shows a cyclical diurnal expression in Medicago with peak expression at dawn, consistent with AtCDF genes like AtCDF1. However, MtCDFd1_1 lacks predicted GI or FKF1 binding domains, indicating possible differences in its regulation from AtCDF1. In Arabidopsis, CDFs act in a redundant manner, and the same is likely true of temperate legumes as no flowering time phenotypes were observed when MtCDFd1_1 or other MtCDFs were knocked out in Medicago Tnt1 lines. Nevertheless, overexpression of MtCDFd1_1 in Medicago plants resulted in late flowering relative to wild type in inductive vernalized long-day (VLD) conditions, but not in vernalized short days (VSDs), rendering them day neutral. Expression of MtCO-like genes was not affected in the transgenic lines, but LD-induced genes MtFTa1, MtFTb1, MtFTb2, and MtSOC1a showed reduced expression. Plants carrying both the Mtfta1 mutation and 35S:MtCDFd1_1 flowered no later than the Mtfta1 plants. This indicates that 35S:MtCDFd1_1 likely influences flowering in VLD via repressive effects on MtFTa1 expression. Overall, our study implicates MtCDF genes in photoperiodic regulation in Medicago by working redundantly to repress FT-like genes, particularly MtFTa1, but in a CO-independent manner, indicating differences from the Arabidopsis model.
Project description:FLAVIN-BINDING, KELCH REPEAT, F-BOX 1 (FKF1) is a blue-light receptor whose function is related to flowering promotion under long-day conditions in <i>Arabidopsis thaliana</i>. However, information about the physiological role of FKF1 in day-neutral plants and even the physiological role other than photoperiodic flowering is lacking. Thus, the FKF1 homolog SlFKF1 was investigated in tomato, a day-neutral plant and a useful model for plants with fleshy fruit. It was confirmed that SlFKF1 belongs to the FKF1 group by phylogenetic tree analysis. The high sequence identity with <i>A. thaliana</i> FKF1, the conserved amino acids essential for function, and the similarity in the diurnal change in expression suggested that SlFKF1 may have similar functions to <i>A. thaliana</i> FKF1. CONSTANS (CO) is a transcription factor regulated by FKF1 and is responsible for the transcription of genes downstream of <i>CO</i>. <i>cis</i>-Regulatory elements targeted by CO were found in the promoter region of <i>SINGLE FLOWER TRUSS (SFT)</i> and <i>RIN</i>, which are involved in the regulation of flowering and fruit ripening, respectively. The blue-light effects on <i>SlFKF1</i> expression, flowering, and fruit lycopene concentration have been observed in this study and previous studies. It was confirmed in RNA interference lines that the low expression of <i>SlFKF1</i> is associated with late flowering with increased leaflets and low lycopene concentrations. This study sheds light on the various physiological roles of FKF1 in plants.
Project description:Limited water availability is one of the most prominent abiotic constraints to plant survival and reproduction. Thus, plants have evolved different strategies to cope with water deficit, including modification of their growth and timing of developmental events such as flowering. In this work, we explore the link between flowering time and growth responses to moderate drought stress in Arabidopsis thaliana using natural variation for these traits found in the Landsberg erecta x Antwerp-1 recombinant inbred line population. We developed and phenotyped near isogenic lines containing different allelic combinations at three interacting quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting both flowering time and growth in response to water deficit. We used these lines to confirm additive and epistatic effects of the three QTL and observed a strong association between late flowering and reduced sensitivity to drought. Analyses of growth responses to drought over time revealed that late flowering plants were able to recover their growth in the second half of their vegetative development. In contrast, early flowering, a common drought escape strategy that ensures plant survival under severe water deficit, was associated with strongly impaired plant fitness. The results presented here indicate that late flowering may be advantageous under continuous mild water deficit as it allows stress acclimatization over time.
Project description:Plants use day-length information to coordinate flowering time with the appropriate season to maximize reproduction. In Arabidopsis, the long day-specific expression of CONSTANS (CO) protein is crucial for flowering induction. Although light signaling regulates CO protein stability, the mechanism by which CO is stabilized in the long-day afternoon has remained elusive. Here, we demonstrate that FLAVIN-BINDING, KELCH REPEAT, F-BOX 1 (FKF1) protein stabilizes CO protein in the afternoon in long days. FKF1 interacts with CO through its LOV domain, and blue light enhances this interaction. In addition, FKF1 simultaneously removes CYCLING DOF FACTOR 1 (CDF1), which represses CO and FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) transcription. Together with CO transcriptional regulation, FKF1 protein controls robust FT mRNA induction through multiple feedforward mechanisms that accurately control flowering timing.