Time of day and network reprogramming during drought induced CAM photosynthesis in Sedum album.
ABSTRACT: Plants with facultative crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) maximize performance through utilizing C3 or C4 photosynthesis under ideal conditions while temporally switching to CAM under water stress (drought). While genome-scale analyses of constitutive CAM plants suggest that time of day networks are shifted, or phased to the evening compared to C3, little is known for how the shift from C3 to CAM networks is modulated in drought induced CAM. Here we generate a draft genome for the drought-induced CAM-cycling species Sedum album. Through parallel sampling in well-watered (C3) and drought (CAM) conditions, we uncover a massive rewiring of time of day expression and a CAM and stress-specific network. The core circadian genes are expanded in S. album and under CAM induction, core clock genes either change phase or amplitude. While the core clock cis-elements are conserved in S. album, we uncover a set of novel CAM and stress specific cis-elements consistent with our finding of rewired co-expression networks. We identified shared elements between constitutive CAM and CAM-cycling species and expression patterns unique to CAM-cycling S. album. Together these results demonstrate that drought induced CAM-cycling photosynthesis evolved through the mobilization of a stress-specific, time of day network, and not solely the phasing of existing C3 networks. These results will inform efforts to engineer water use efficiency into crop plants for growth on marginal land.
Project description:The circadian clock drives time-specific gene expression, enabling biological processes to be temporally controlled. Plants that conduct crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) photosynthesis represent an interesting case of circadian regulation of gene expression as stomatal movement is temporally inverted relative to stomatal movement in C3 plants. The mechanisms behind how the circadian clock enabled physiological differences at the molecular level is not well understood. Recently, the rescheduling of gene expression was reported as a mechanism to explain how CAM evolved from C3. Therefore, we investigated whether core circadian clock genes in CAM plants were re-phased during evolution, or whether networks of phase-specific genes were simply re-wired to different core clock genes. We identified candidate core clock genes based on gene expression features and then applied the Local Edge Machine (LEM) algorithm to infer regulatory relationships between this new set of core candidates and known core clock genes in <i>Kalanch</i><i>oë fedtschenkoi</i>. We further inferred stomata-related gene targets for known and candidate core clock genes and constructed a gene regulatory network for core clock and stomata-related genes. Our results provide new insight into the mechanism of circadian control of CAM-related genes in <i>K. fedtschenkoi</i>, facilitating the engineering of CAM machinery into non-CAM plants for sustainable crop production in water-limited environments.
Project description:While the majority of plants use the typical C3 carbon metabolic pathway, ~6% of angiosperms have adapted to carbon limitation as a result of water stress by employing a modified form of photosynthesis known as Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM). CAM plants concentrate carbon in the cells by temporally separating atmospheric carbon acquisition from fixation into carbohydrates. CAM has been studied for decades, but the evolutionary progression from C3 to CAM remains obscure. In order to better understand the morphological and physiological characteristics associated with CAM photosynthesis, phenotypic variation was assessed in Yucca aloifolia, a CAM species, Yucca filamentosa, a C3 species, and Yucca gloriosa, a hybrid species derived from these two yuccas exhibiting intermediate C3-CAM characteristics. Gas exchange, titratable leaf acidity, and leaf anatomical traits of all three species were assayed in a common garden under well-watered and drought-stressed conditions. Yucca gloriosa showed intermediate phenotypes for nearly all traits measured, including the ability to acquire carbon at night. Using the variation found among individuals of all three species, correlations between traits were assessed to better understand how leaf anatomy and CAM physiology are related. Yucca gloriosa may be constrained by a number of traits which prevent it from using CAM to as high a degree as Y. aloifolia. The intermediate nature of Y. gloriosa makes it a promising system in which to study the evolution of CAM.
Project description:Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) is a carbon-concentrating mechanism that has evolved numerous times across flowering plants and is thought to be an adaptation to water-limited environments. CAM has been investigated from physiological and biochemical perspectives, but little is known about how plants evolve from C3 to CAM at the genetic or metabolic level. Here we take a comparative approach in analyzing time-course data of C3, CAM, and C3+CAM intermediate Yucca (Asparagaceae) species. RNA samples were collected over a 24 h period from both well-watered and drought-stressed plants, and were clustered based on time-dependent expression patterns. Metabolomic data reveal differences in carbohydrate metabolism and antioxidant response between the CAM and C3 species, suggesting that changes to metabolic pathways are important for CAM evolution and function. However, all three species share expression profiles of canonical CAM pathway genes, regardless of photosynthetic pathway. Despite differences in transcript and metabolite profiles between the C3 and CAM species, shared time-structured expression of CAM genes in both CAM and C3Yucca species suggests that ancestral expression patterns required for CAM may have pre-dated its origin in Yucca.
Project description:Umbilicus rupestris (pennywort) switches from C3 photosynthesis to an incomplete form of crassulacean acid metabolism (referred to as 'CAM-idling') when exposed to water stress (drought). This switch is accompanied by an increase in the activity of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase. This enzyme also shows several changes in properties, including a marked decrease in sensitivity to acid pH, a lower Km for phosphoenolpyruvate, very much decreased sensitivity to the allosteric inhibitor malate, and increased responsiveness to the allosteric effector glucose 6-phosphate. The Mr of the enzyme remains unchanged, at approx. 185 000. These changes in properties of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase are discussed in relation to the roles of the enzyme in C3 and in CAM plants.
Project description:BACKGROUND: In plants, a large family of calmodulin (CaM) and CaM-like (CML) proteins transduce the increase in cytosolic Ca2+ concentrations by binding to and altering the activities of target proteins, and thereby affecting the physiological responses to a vast array of stimuli. Here, transcript expression analysis of Cam and CML gene family members in rice (Oryza sativa L.) was extensively examined. RESULTS: Cam and CML genes in rice exhibited differential expression patterns in tissues/organs. Under osmotic stress and salt stress, expression of OsCam1-1, OsCML4, 5, 8, and 11 was induced with different kinetics and magnitude. OsCML4 and 8 mRNA levels significantly increased by 3 h after treatment and remained elevated for at least 24 h while expression of OsCam1-1, OsCML5 and 11 was up-regulated as early as 1-3 h before rapidly returning to normal levels. Several cis-acting elements in response to abiotic stresses, including DREs (important promoter elements responsive to drought, high salt, and cold stress), were detected in the 5' upstream regions of these genes. The observed induction of the GUS activity of transgenic rice plants via the OsCam1-1 promoter appeared to be biphasic and dependent on the severity of salt stress. CONCLUSIONS: Large OsCam and OsCML gene family members likely play differential roles as signal transducers in regulating various developmental processes and represent important nodes in the signal transduction and transcriptional regulation networks in abiotic stresss responses mediated by the complex Ca2+ signals in plants, which are rich in both spatial and temporal information.
Project description:The Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) pathway helps plants to alleviate the oxidative stress under drought, but the shift to CAM-idling may expose plants to the overproduction of reactive oxygen species causing cell damages. The facultative CAM species Portulacaria afra L., was subjected to long-term water deprivation to assess the photo-protective strategies and the poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) activity during water stress and plant capability to recover from the stress. Measurements of titratable acidity, chlorophyll fluorescence emission, and antioxidant activity were performed during the stress and rewatering. Under water deprivation, plants shifted from C3 to CAM metabolism, reaching the CAM-idling status at the end of the stress period. The daily variation of the titratable acidity and PARP activity increased at the beginning of stress and declined with stress progression, reaching the lowest value at the end of stress treatment. H2O2 content, superoxide dismutase (SOD), peroxidase (POD), and catalase (CAT) activities increased with the severity of water stress. The photochemical processes remained high during the entire stress period indicating the presence of alternative sinks to CO2 fixation. The elevated activity of catalase under severe water stress suggests the occurrence of photorespiration in sustaining the photosynthetic electron transport under CAM-idling condition. The overall data indicate that scavenger enzymes, photorespiration and PARP activity modulation contribute to the strong resistance of P. afra to severe water stress, preserving the functioning of photosynthetic apparatus and ensuring plant recovery with rewatering.
Project description:CO2 uptake and water loss in plants are regulated by microscopic pores on the surface of leaves, called stomata. This enablement of gas exchange by the opening and closing of stomata is one of the most essential processes in plant photosynthesis and transpiration, affecting water-use efficiency (WUE) and thus drought susceptibility. In plant species with crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) photosynthesis, diel stomatal movement pattern is inverted relative to C3 and C4 photosynthesis species, resulting in much higher WUE and drought tolerance. However, little is known about the molecular basis of stomatal movement in CAM species. The goal of this study is to identify candidate genes that could play a role in stomatal movement in an obligate CAM species, Kalanchoë fedtschenkoi. By way of a text-mining approach, proteins were identified in various plant species, spanning C3, C4, and CAM photosynthetic types, which are orthologous to proteins known to be involved in stomatal movement. A comparative analysis of diel time-course gene expression data was performed between K. fedtschenkoi and two C3 species (i.e., Arabidopsis thaliana and Solanum lycopersicum) to identify differential gene expression between the dusk and dawn phases of the 24-h cycle. A rescheduled catalase gene known to be involved in stomatal movement was identified, suggesting a role for H2O2 in CAM-like stomatal movement. Overall, these results provide new insights into the molecular regulation of stomatal movement in CAM plants, facilitating genetic improvement of drought resistance in agricultural crops through manipulation of stomata-related genes.
Project description:<h4>Background and aims</h4>Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) is often considered to be a complex trait, requiring orchestration of leaf anatomy and physiology for optimal performance. However, the observation of trait correlations is based largely on comparisons between C3 and strong CAM species, resulting in a lack of understanding as to how such traits evolve and the level of intraspecific variability for CAM and associated traits.<h4>Methods</h4>To understand intraspecific variation for traits underlying CAM and how these traits might assemble over evolutionary time, we conducted detailed time course physiological screens and measured aspects of leaf anatomy in 24 genotypes of a C3+CAM hybrid species, Yucca gloriosa (Asparagaceae). Comparisons were made to Y. gloriosa's progenitor species, Y. filamentosa (C3) and Y. aloifolia (CAM).<h4>Key results</h4>Based on gas exchange and measurement of leaf acids, Y. gloriosa appears to use both C3 and CAM, and varies across genotypes in the degree to which CAM can be upregulated under drought stress. While correlations between leaf anatomy and physiology exist when testing across all three Yucca species, such correlations break down at the species level in Y. gloriosa.<h4>Conclusions</h4>The variation in CAM upregulation in Y. gloriosa is a result of its relatively recent hybrid origin. The lack of trait correlations between anatomy and physiology within Y. gloriosa indicate that the evolution of CAM, at least initially, can proceed through a wide combination of anatomical traits, and more favourable combinations are eventually selected for in strong CAM plants.
Project description:Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) photosynthesis is a modification of the core C3 photosynthetic pathway that improves the ability of plants to assimilate carbon in water-limited environments. CAM plants fix CO2 mostly at night, when transpiration rates are low. All of the CAM pathway genes exist in ancestral C3 species, but the timing and magnitude of expression are greatly altered between C3 and CAM species. Understanding these regulatory changes is key to elucidating the mechanism by which CAM evolved from C3. Here, we use two closely related species in the Orchidaceae, Erycina pusilla (CAM) and Erycina crista-galli (C3), to conduct comparative transcriptomic analyses across multiple time points. Clustering of genes with expression variation across the diel cycle revealed some canonical CAM pathway genes similarly expressed in both species, regardless of photosynthetic pathway. However, gene network construction indicated that 149 gene families had significant differences in network connectivity and were further explored for these functional enrichments. Genes involved in light sensing and ABA signaling were some of the most differently connected genes between the C3 and CAM Erycina species, in agreement with the contrasting diel patterns of stomatal conductance in C3 and CAM plants. Our results suggest changes to transcriptional cascades are important for the transition from C3 to CAM photosynthesis in Erycina.
Project description:The Portulacaceae enable the study of the evolutionary relationship between C4 and crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) photosynthesis. Shoots of well-watered plants of the C3-C4 intermediate species Portulaca cryptopetala Speg. exhibit net uptake of CO2 solely during the light. CO2 fixation is primarily via the C3 pathway as indicated by a strong stimulation of CO2 uptake when shoots were provided with air containing 2% O2. When plants were subjected to water stress, daytime CO2 uptake was reduced and CAM-type net CO2 uptake in the dark occurred. This was accompanied by nocturnal accumulation of acid in both leaves and stems, also a defining characteristic of CAM. Following rewatering, net CO2 uptake in the dark ceased in shoots, as did nocturnal acidification of the leaves and stems. With this unequivocal demonstration of stress-related reversible, i.e. facultative, induction of CAM, P. cryptopetala becomes the first C3-C4 intermediate species reported to exhibit CAM. Portulaca molokiniensis Hobdy, a C4 species, also exhibited CAM only when subjected to water stress. Facultative CAM has now been demonstrated in all investigated species of Portulaca, which are well sampled from across the phylogeny. This strongly suggests that in Portulaca, a lineage in which species engage predominately in C4 photosynthesis, facultative CAM is ancestral to C4. In a broader context, it has now been demonstrated that CAM can co-exist in leaves that exhibit any of the other types of photosynthesis known in terrestrial plants: C3, C4 and C3-C4 intermediate.