GhCIPK6a increases salt tolerance in transgenic upland cotton by involving in ROS scavenging and MAPK signaling pathways.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Salt stress is one of the most damaging abiotic stresses in production of Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum). Upland cotton is defined as a medium salt-tolerant crop. Salinity hinders root development, shoots growth, and reduces the fiber quality. RESULTS:Our previous study verified a GhCIPK6a gene response to salt stress in G. hirsutum. The homologs of GhCIPK6a were analyzed in A2 (G. arboreum), D5 (G. raimondii), and AD1 (G. hirsutum) genomes. GhCIPK6a localized to the vacuole and cell membrane. The GhCBL1-GhCIPK6a and GhCBL8-GhCIPK6a complexes localized to the nucleus and cytomembrane. Overexpression of GhCIPK6a enhanced expression levels of co-expressed genes induced by salt stress, which scavenged ROS and involved in MAPK signaling pathways verified by RNA-seq analysis. Water absorption capacity and cell membrane stability of seeds from GhCIPK6a overexpressed lines was higher than that of wild-type seeds during imbibed germination stage. The seed germination rates and seedling field emergence percentages of GhCIPK6a overexpressed lines were higher than that of control line under salt stress. Moreover, overexpressing of GhCIPK6a in cotton increased lint percentage, and fiber length uniformity under salt stress. CONCLUSIONS:We verified the function of GhCIPK6a by transformation and RNA-seq analysis. GhCIPK6a overexpressed lines exhibited higher tolerance to abiotic stresses, which functioned by involving in ROS scavenging and MAPK pathways. Therefore, GhCIPK6a has the potential for cotton breeding to improve stress-tolerance.
Project description:Gossypium arboreum possesses many favorable traits including robust defense against biotic and abiotic stress although it has been withdrawn from the market because of lower yield and fiber quality compared to G. hirsutum (upland cotton). It is therefore important to explore and utilize the beneficial genes of G. arboretum for G. hirsutum cultivar breeding. Here, the function of G. arboreum JAZ1 in tolerance to salt stress was determined through loss-of-function analysis. GaJAZ1can interact with GaMYC2 to repress expression of downstream genes whose promoters contain a G-box cis element, affecting plant tolerance to salinity stress. The experimental data from NaCl treatments and a 2 year continuous field trial with natural saline-alkaline soil showed that the ectopically overexpressed GaJAZ1 significantly increased salt tolerance in upland cotton compared to the wild type, showing higher growth vigor with taller plants, increased fresh weight, and more bolls, which is due to reprogrammed expression of tolerance-related genes and promotion of root development. High-throughput RNA sequencing of GaJAZ1 transgenic and wild-type plants showed many differentially expressed genes involved in JA signaling and biosynthesis, salt stress-related genes, and hormone-related genes, suggesting that overexpressing GaJAZ1 can reprogram the expression of defense-related genes in G. hirsutum plants to increase tolerance to salt stress. The research provides a foundation to explore and utilize favorable genes from Gossypium species for upland cotton cultivar breeding.
Project description:Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) is the main natural fiber crop worldwide and is an essential source of seed oil and biofuel products. Many abiotic stresses, such as drought and salinity, constrain cotton production. Thioredoxins (TRXs) are a group of small ubiquitous proteins that are widely distributed among organisms. TRXs play a crucial role in regulating diverse functions during plant growth and development. In the present study, a novel GhTRX134 gene was characterized and overexpressed in Arabidopsis and silenced in cotton under drought stress. Furthermore, the proline content and enzyme activity levels were measured in transgenic plants and wild-type (Wt) plants under drought and salt stress. The results revealed that the overexpression of GhTRX134 enhanced abiotic stress tolerance. When GhTRX134 was silenced, cotton plants become more sensitive to drought. Taken together, these findings confirmed that the overexpression of GhTRX134 improved drought and salt tolerance in Arabidopsis plants. Therefore, the GhTRX134 gene can be transformed into cotton plants to obtain transgenic lines for more functional details.
Project description:Melatonin (MT; N-acetyI-5-methoxytryptamine) is an amine hormone involved in abiotic stress resistance. Previous studies have confirmed that melatonin can promote seed germination, mediate physiological regulation mechanisms, and stimulate crop growth under stress. However, the osmotic regulation mechanism by which exogenous melatonin mediates salt tolerance in cotton is still largely unknown. To investigate the effect of salt stress on melatonin concentration in germinating cotton seeds, we analyzed melatonin content over time during seed germination under different treatments. Melatonin content reached its minimum at day 6, while cotton germination rates peaked at day 6, indicating melatonin content and seed germination are correlated. Then we investigated the effects of 10-100 ?M melatonin treatments on membrane lipid peroxides and osmotic adjustment substances during cotton seed germination under salt stress. Salt stress led to electrolyte leakage (EL) as well as accumulations of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), malondialdehyde (MDA), organic osmotic substances (i.e., proline, soluble sugars), and inorganic osmotic substances (i.e., Na+, Cl-). Meanwhile, the contents of melatonin, soluble proteins, and K+ as well as the K+/Na+ balance decreased, indicating that salt stress inhibited melatonin synthesis and damaged cellular membranes, seriously affecting seed germination. However, melatonin pretreatment at different concentrations alleviated the adverse effects of salt stress on cotton seeds and reduced EL as well as the contents of H2O2, MDA, Na+, and Cl-. The exogenous application of melatonin also promoted melatonin, soluble sugar, soluble proteins, proline, and K+/Na+ contents under salt stress. These results demonstrate that supplemental melatonin can effectively ameliorate the repression of cotton seed germination by enhancing osmotic regulating substances and adjusting ion homeostasis under salt stress. Thus, melatonin may potentially be used to protect cotton seeds from salt stress, with the 20 ?M melatonin treatment most effectively promoting cotton seed germination and improving salt stress tolerance.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Salinity is a major abiotic stress seriously hindering crop yield. Development and utilization of tolerant varieties is the most economical way to address soil salinity. Upland cotton is a major fiber crop and pioneer plant on saline soil and thus its genetic architecture underlying salt tolerance should be extensively explored. RESULTS:In this study, genome-wide association analysis and RNA sequencing were employed to detect salt-tolerant qualitative-trait loci (QTLs) and candidate genes in 196 upland cotton genotypes at the germination stage. Using comprehensive evaluation values of salt tolerance in four environments, we identified 33 significant single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), including 17 and 7 SNPs under at least two and four environments, respectively. The 17 stable SNPs were located within or near 98 candidate genes in 13 QTLs, including 35 genes that were functionally annotated to be involved in salt stress responses. RNA-seq analysis indicated that among the 98 candidate genes, 13 were stably differentially expressed. Furthermore, 12 of the 13 candidate genes were verified by qRT-PCR. RNA-seq analysis detected 6640, 3878, and 6462 differentially expressed genes at three sampling time points, of which 869 were shared. CONCLUSIONS:These results, including the elite cotton accessions with accurate salt tolerance evaluation, the significant SNP markers, the candidate genes, and the salt-tolerant pathways, could improve our understanding of the molecular regulatory mechanisms under salt stress tolerance and genetic manipulation for cotton improvement.
Project description:Sucrose non-fermenting-1-related protein kinase 2 (SnRK2) is a plant-specific serine/threonine kinase family involved in the abscisic acid (ABA) signaling pathway and responds to osmotic stress. A genome-wide analysis of this protein family has been conducted previously in some plant species, but little is known about SnRK2 genes in upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). The recent release of the G. hirsutum genome sequence provides an opportunity to identify and characterize the SnRK2 kinase family in upland cotton.We identified 20 putative SnRK2 sequences in the G. hirsutum genome, designated as GhSnRK2.1 to GhSnRK2.20. All of the sequences encoded hydrophilic proteins. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the GhSnRK2 genes were classifiable into three groups. The chromosomal location and phylogenetic analysis of the cotton SnRK2 genes indicated that segmental duplication likely contributed to the diversification and evolution of the genes. The gene structure and motif composition of the cotton SnRK2 genes were analyzed. Nine exons were conserved in length among all members of the GhSnRK2 family. Although the C-terminus was divergent, seven conserved motifs were present. All GhSnRK2s genes showed expression patterns under abiotic stress based on transcriptome data. The expression profiles of five selected genes were verified in various tissues by quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR). Transcript levels of some family members were up-regulated in response to drought, salinity or ABA treatments, consistent with potential roles in response to abiotic stress.This study is the first comprehensive analysis of SnRK2 genes in upland cotton. Our results provide the fundamental information for the functional dissection of GhSnRK2s and vital availability for the improvement of plant stress tolerance using GhSnRK2s.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Cotton (Gossypium spp.) is one of the major fibre crops of the world. Although it is classified as salt tolerant crop, cotton growth and productivity are adversely affected by high salinity, especially at germination and seedling stages. Identification of genes and miRNAs responsible for salt tolerance in upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) would help reveal the molecular mechanisms of salt tolerance. We performed physiological experiments and transcriptome sequencing (mRNA-seq and small RNA-seq) of cotton leaves under salt stress using Illumina sequencing technology. RESULTS: We investigated two distinct salt stress phases--dehydration (4 h) and ionic stress (osmotic restoration; 24 h)--that were identified by physiological changes of 14-day-old seedlings of two cotton genotypes, one salt tolerant and the other salt sensitive, during a 72-h NaCl exposure. A comparative transcriptomics was used to monitor gene and miRNA differential expression at two time points (4 and 24 h) in leaves of the two cotton genotypes under salinity conditions. The expression patterns of differentially co-expressed unigenes were divided into six groups using short time-servies expression miner software. During a 24-h salt exposure, 819 transcription factor unigenes were differentially expressed in both genotypes, with 129 unigenes specifically expressed in the salt-tolerant genotype. Under salt stress, 108 conserved miRNAs from known families were differentially expressed at two time points in the salt-tolerant genotype. We further analyzed the predicted target genes of these miRNAs along with the transcriptome for each time point. Important expressed genes encoding membrane receptors, transporters, and pathways involved in biosynthesis and signal transduction of calcium-dependent protein kinase, mitogen-activated protein kinase, and hormones (abscisic acid and ethylene) were up-regulated. We also analyzed the salt stress response of some key miRNAs and their target genes and found that the expressions of five of nine target genes exhibited significant inverse correlations with their corresponding miRNAs. On the basis of these results, we constructed molecular regulatory pathways and a potential regulatory network for these salt-responsive miRNAs. CONCLUSIONS: Our comprehensive transcriptome analysis has provided new insights into salt-stress response of upland cotton. The results should contribute to the development of genetically modified cotton with salt tolerance.
Project description:Soil salinization is one of the major environmental constraints to plant growth and agricultural production worldwide. Signaling components involving calcium (Ca2+) and the downstream calcium-dependent protein kinases (CPKs) play key roles in the perception and transduction of stress signals. However, the study of CPKs in cotton and their functions in response to salt stress remain unexplored.A total of 98 predicted CPKs were identified from upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L. 'TM-1'), and phylogenetic analyses classified them into four groups. Gene family distribution studies have revealed the substantial impacts of the genome duplication events to the total number of GhCPKs. Transcriptome analyses showed a wide distribution of CPKs' expression among different organs. A total of 19 CPKs were selected for their rapid responses to salt stress at the transcriptional level, most of which were also incduced by the thylene-releasing chemical ethephon, suggesting a partal overlap of the salinity and ethylene responses. Silencing of 4 of the 19 CPKs (GhCPK8, GhCPK38, GhCPK54, and GhCPK55) severely compromised the basal cotton resistance to salt stress.Our genome-wide expression analysis of CPK genes from up-land cotton suggests that CPKs are involved in multiple developmental responses as well as the response to different abiotic stresses. A cluster of the cotton CPKs was shown to participate in the early signaling events in cotton responses to salt stress. Our results provide significant insights on functional analysis of CPKs in cotton, especially in the context of cotton adaptions to salt stress.
Project description:As a second messenger, Ca(2+) plays a major role in cold induced transduction via stimulus-specific increases in [Ca(2+)]cyt, which is called calcium signature. During this process, CAXs (Ca(2+)/H(+) exchangers) play critical role. For the first time, a putative Ca(2+)/H(+) exchanger GhCAX3 gene from upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum cv. 'YZ-1') was isolated and characterized. It was highly expressed in all tissues of cotton except roots and fibers. This gene may act as a regulator in cotton's response to abiotic stresses as it could be up-regulated by Ca(2+), NaCl, ABA and cold stress. Similar to other CAXs, it was proved that GhCAX3 also had Ca(2+) transport activity and the N-terminal regulatory region (NRR) through yeast complementation assay. Over-expression of GhCAX3 in tobacco showed less sensitivity to ABA during seed germination and seedling stages, and the phenotypic difference between wild type (WT) and transgenic plants was more significant when the NRR was truncated. Furthermore, GhCAX3 conferred cold tolerance in yeast as well as in tobacco seedlings based on physiological and molecular studies. However, transgenic plant seeds showed more sensitivity to cold stress compared to WT during seed germination, especially when expressed in N-terminal truncated version. Finally, the extent of sensitivity in transgenic lines was more severe than that in WT line under sodium tungstate treatment (an ABA repressor), indicating that ABA could alleviate cold sensitivity of GhCAX3 seeds, especially in short of its NRR. Meanwhile, we also found that overexpression of GhCAX3 could enhance some cold and ABA responsive marker genes. Taken together, these results suggested that GhCAX3 plays important roles in the cross-talk of ABA and cold signal transduction, and compared to full-length of GhCAX3, the absence of NRR could enhance the tolerance or sensitivity to cold stress, depending on seedling's developmental stages.
Project description:The germination of cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) seeds is affected by drought stress; however, little is known about the physiological mechanism affecting germination and the effect of melatonin (MT) on cotton seed germination under drought stress. Therefore, we studied the effects of exogenous MT on the antioxidant capacity and epidermal microstructure of cotton under drought stress. The results demonstrated a retarded water absorption capacity of testa under drought stress, significantly inhibiting germination and growth in cotton seeds. Drought stress led to the accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), malondialdehyde (MDA), and osmoregulatory substances (e.g., proline, soluble protein, and soluble sugars); it also decreased the activity of antioxidant enzymes and ?-amylase. Drought stress inhibited gibberellin acid (GA3) synthesis and increased abscisic acid (ABA) content, seriously affecting seed germination. However, seeds pre-soaked with MT (100 µM) showed a positive regulation in the number and opening of stomata in cotton testa. The exogenous application of MT increased the germination rate, germination potential, radical length, and fresh weight, as well as the activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), peroxidase (POD), and ?-amylase. In addition, MT application increased the contents of organic osmotic substances by decreasing the hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), superoxide anion (O2 -), and MDA levels under drought stress. Further analysis demonstrated that seeds pre-soaked with MT alleviated drought stress by affecting the ABA and GA3 contents. Our findings show that MT plays a positive role in protecting cotton seeds from drought stress.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Late embryogenesis abundant (LEA) proteins are large groups of hydrophilic proteins with major role in drought and other abiotic stresses tolerance in plants. In-depth study and characterization of LEA protein families have been carried out in other plants, but not in upland cotton. The main aim of this research work was to characterize the late embryogenesis abundant (LEA) protein families and to carry out gene expression analysis to determine their potential role in drought stress tolerance in upland cotton. Increased cotton production in the face of declining precipitation and availability of fresh water for agriculture use is the focus for breeders, cotton being the backbone of textile industries and a cash crop for many countries globally. RESULTS:In this work, a total of 242, 136 and 142 LEA genes were identified in G. hirsutum, G. arboreum and G. raimondii respectively. The identified genes were classified into eight groups based on their conserved domain and phylogenetic tree analysis. LEA 2 were the most abundant, this could be attributed to their hydrophobic character. Upland cotton LEA genes have fewer introns and are distributed in all chromosomes. Majority of the duplicated LEA genes were segmental. Syntenic analysis showed that greater percentages of LEA genes are conserved. Segmental gene duplication played a key role in the expansion of LEA genes. Sixty three miRNAs were found to target 89 genes, such as miR164, ghr-miR394 among others. Gene ontology analysis revealed that LEA genes are involved in desiccation and defense responses. Almost all the LEA genes in their promoters contained ABRE, MBS, W-Box and TAC-elements, functionally known to be involved in drought stress and other stress responses. Majority of the LEA genes were involved in secretory pathways. Expression profile analysis indicated that most of the LEA genes were highly expressed in drought tolerant cultivars Gossypium tomentosum as opposed to drought susceptible, G. hirsutum. The tolerant genotypes have a greater ability to modulate genes under drought stress than the more susceptible upland cotton cultivars. CONCLUSION:The finding provides comprehensive information on LEA genes in upland cotton, G. hirsutum and possible function in plants under drought stress.