Project description:Rhazya stricta is an evergreen shrub that is widely distributed across Western and South Asia, and like many other members of the Apocynaceae produces monoterpene indole alkaloids that have anti-cancer properties. This species is adapted to very harsh desert conditions making it an excellent system for studying tolerance to high temperatures and salinity. RNA-Seq analysis was performed on R. stricta exposed to severe salt stress (500 mM NaCl) across four time intervals (0, 2, 12 and 24 h) to examine mechanisms of salt tolerance. A large number of transcripts including genes encoding tetrapyrroles and pentatricopeptide repeat (PPR) proteins were regulated only after 12 h of stress of seedlings grown in controlled greenhouse conditions. Mechanisms of salt tolerance in R. stricta may involve the upregulation of genes encoding chaperone protein Dnaj6, UDP-glucosyl transferase 85a2, protein transparent testa 12 and respiratory burst oxidase homolog protein b. Many of the highly-expressed genes act on protecting protein folding during salt stress and the production of flavonoids, key secondary metabolites in stress tolerance. Other regulated genes encode enzymes in the porphyrin and chlorophyll metabolic pathway with important roles during plant growth, photosynthesis, hormone signaling and abiotic responses. Heme biosynthesis in R. stricta leaves might add to the level of salt stress tolerance by maintaining appropriate levels of photosynthesis and normal plant growth as well as by the participation in reactive oxygen species (ROS) production under stress. We speculate that the high expression levels of PPR genes may be dependent on expression levels of their targeted editing genes. Although the results of PPR gene family indicated regulation of a large number of transcripts under salt stress, PPR actions were independent of the salt stress because their RNA editing patterns were unchanged.
Project description:Climate change is predicted to be a serious threat to agriculture due to the need for crops to be able to tolerate increased heat stress. Desert plants have already adapted to high levels of heat stress so they make excellent systems for identifying genes involved in thermotolerance. Rhazya stricta is an evergreen shrub that is native to extremely hot regions across Western and South Asia, making it an excellent system for examining plant responses to heat stress. Transcriptomes of apical and mature leaves of R. stricta were analyzed at different temperatures during several time points of the day to detect heat response mechanisms that might confer thermotolerance and protection of the plant photosynthetic apparatus.Biological pathways that were crosstalking during the day involved the biosynthesis of several heat stress-related compounds, including soluble sugars, polyols, secondary metabolites, phenolics and methionine. Highly downregulated leaf transcripts at the hottest time of the day (40-42.4 °C) included genes encoding cyclin, cytochrome p450/secologanin synthase and U-box containing proteins, while upregulated, abundant transcripts included genes encoding heat shock proteins (HSPs), chaperones, UDP-glycosyltransferase, aquaporins and protein transparent testa 12. The upregulation of transcripts encoding HSPs, chaperones and UDP-glucosyltransferase and downregulation of transcripts encoding U-box containing proteins likely contributed to thermotolerance in R. stricta leaf by correcting protein folding and preventing protein degradation. Transcription factors that may regulate expression of genes encoding HSPs and chaperones under heat stress included HSFA2 to 4, AP2-EREBP and WRKY27.This study contributed new insights into the regulatory mechanisms of thermotolerance in the wild plant species R. stricta, an arid land, perennial evergreen shrub common in the Arabian Peninsula and Indian subcontinent. Enzymes from several pathways are interacting in the biosynthesis of soluble sugars, polyols, secondary metabolites, phenolics and methionine and are the primary contributors to thermotolerance in this species.
Project description:Here, we determined in vitro antioxidant activity, total phenols and flavonoids and evaluated antiproliferative activity of three medicinal plant extracts: Trigonella foenum-graecum (Fenugreek), Cassia acutifolia (Senna) and Rhazya stricta (Harmal).The leaves of the three medicinal plants were extracted with 70% ethanol. Antioxidant activities of the extracts were determined by using DPPH (1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl) assay. Total flavonoid and phenolic contents were determined using colorimetric assays. MTT assay was used to estimate the antiproliferative activities of the extracts against human hepatoma (HepG2) cancer cell line. In addition, the effects of R. stricta extract on cell cycle, colony formation, and wound healing of HepG2 cells and tube formation of HUVEC cells were assessed.Percentage inhibition of DPPH scavenging activity were dose-dependent and ranged between (89.9%?±?0.51) and (28.6%?±?2.07). Phenolic contents ranged between (11.5?±?0.013) and (9.7?±?0.008) mg GAE/g while flavonoid content ranged between (20.8?±?0.40) and (0.12?±?0.0.01) mg QE/g. Antiproliferative results of the extracts were found to be consistent with their antioxidant activity. Among the extracts evaluated, that of R. stricta showed the best antioxidant, antiproliferative and antimetastatic activities at low concentration. It also inhibited the colony-formation capacity of HepG2 cells and exhibited antiangiogenic activity. Cell cycle analysis showed significant arrest of cells at G2/M phase 12 and 48 h after treatment and significant arrest at G1/S phase after 24 h of treatment. Consistent data were observed in western blot analysis of protein levels of Cdc2 and its cyclin partners.These findings introduce R. stricta as a potentially useful anti-metastatic agent and a novel potential anti-tumour agent for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) treatment.
Project description:Methyl jasmonate is capable of initiating or improving the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites in plants and therefore has opened up a concept for the biosynthesis of valuable constituents. In this study, the effect of different doses of methyl jasmonate (MeJA) elicitation on the accumulation of terpenoid indole alkaloids (TIAs) in the hairy root cultures of the medicinal plant, Rhazya stricta throughout a time course (one-seven days) was investigated. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analyses were carried out for targeted ten major non-polar alkaloids. Furthermore, overall alterations in metabolite contents in elicited and control cultures were investigated applying proton nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR) spectroscopy. Methyl jasmonate caused dosage- and time course-dependent significant rise in the accumulation of TIAs as determined by GC-MS. The contents of seven alkaloids including eburenine, quebrachamine, fluorocarpamine, pleiocarpamine, tubotaiwine, tetrahydroalstonine, and ajmalicine increased compared to non-elicited cultures. However, MeJA-elicitation did not induce the accumulation of vincanine, yohimbine (isomer II), and vallesiachotamine. Furthermore, principal component analysis (PCA) of 1H NMR metabolic profiles revealed a discrimination between elicited hairy roots and control cultures with significant increase in total vindoline-type alkaloid content and elevated levels of organic and amino acids. In addition, elicited and control samples had different sugar and fatty acid profiles, suggesting that MeJA also influences the primary metabolism of R. stricta hairy roots. It is evident that methyl jasmonate is applicable for elevating alkaloid accumulation in "hairy root" organ cultures of R. strica.
Project description:The perennial species Rhazya stricta (R. stricta) grows in arid zones and carries out typical C3 photosynthesis under daily extremes of heat, light intensity and low humidity. In order to identify processes attributable to its adaptation to this harsh environment, we profiled the foliar transcriptome of apical and mature leaves harvested from the field at three time periods of the same day.Next generation sequencing was used to reconstruct the transcriptome and quantify gene expression. 28018 full length transcript sequences were recovered and 45.4% were differentially expressed (DE) throughout the day. We compared our dataset with microarray experiments in Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) and other desert species to identify trends in circadian and stress response profiles between species. 34% of the DE genes were homologous to Arabidopsis circadian-regulated genes. Independent of circadian control, significant overlaps with Arabidopsis genes were observed only with heat and salinity/high light stress-responsive genes. Also, groups of DE genes common to other desert plants species were identified. We identified protein families specific to R. stricta which were found to have diverged from their homologs in other species and which were over -expressed at midday.This study shows that temporal profiling is essential to assess the significance of genes apparently responsive to abiotic stress. This revealed that in R. stricta, the circadian clock is a major regulator of DE genes, even of those annotated as stress-responsive in other species. This may be an important feature of the adaptation of R. stricta to its extreme but predictable environment. However, the majority of DE genes were not circadian-regulated. Of these, some were common to other desert species and others were distinct to R. stricta, suggesting that they are important for the adaptation of such plants to arid environments.
Project description:Rhazya stricta Decne. (Apocynaceae) contains a large number of terpenoid indole alkaloids (TIAs). This study focused on the composition of alkaloids obtained from transformed hairy root cultures of R. stricta employing ultra-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS). In the UPLC-MS analyses, a total of 20 TIAs were identified from crude extracts. Eburenine and vincanine were the main alkaloids followed by polar glucoalkaloids, strictosidine lactam and strictosidine. Secodine-type alkaloids, tetrahydrosecodinol, tetrahydro- and dihydrosecodine were detected too. The occurrence of tetrahydrosecodinol was confirmed for the first time for R. stricta. Furthermore, two isomers of yohimbine, serpentine and vallesiachotamine were identified. The study shows that a characteristic pattern of biosynthetically related TIAs can be monitored in Rhazya hairy root crude extract by this chromatographic method.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Green synthesis of metallic nanoparticles has gained significant attention in the field of nanomedicine as an environment-friendly and cost-effective alternative in comparison with other physical and chemical methods. Several metals such as silver, gold, iron, titanium, zinc, magnesium and copper have been subjected to nanoformulation for a wide range of useful applications. Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are playing a major role in the field of nanomedicine and nanotechnology. They are widely used in diagnostics, therapeutic and pharmaceutical industries. Studies have shown potential inhibitory antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antiangiogenesis activities of AgNPs.<h4>Methods</h4>AgNPs have been synthesized using silver nitrate and methanolic root extract of <i>Rhazya stricta</i> that belongs to the <i>Apocynaceae</i> family. Stability and dispersion of nanoparticles were improved by adding xylitol. Synthesized nanoparticles were characterized by UV-Vis spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive spectroscopy, X-ray diffractometer and Fourier transforms infrared spectroscopy. Furthermore, the antibacterial effect of the plant extract and the nanoparticles were evaluated against gram-positive (<i>Bacillus subtilis</i>) and gram-negative (<i>Escherichia coli</i>) bacteria.<h4>Results</h4>The average size of AgNPs synthesized, was 20 nm with the spherical shape. <i>Rhazya stricta</i> based nanoparticles exhibited improved antibacterial activity against both gram-positive and negative strains.
Project description:In order to better understand the ecology and diversity of microbes in the rhizosphere of desert plants, we undertook a survey of Bacillus species isolated from soil around Rhazya stricta plants from the area around Jeddah, in The Kingdom, Saudi Arabia. We have sequenced the genomes of 8 Bacillus isolates representing four different species.
Project description:The possibility of inducing resistance to the two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch, in 'Gala' apple trees growing under optimal fertilization or nitrogen-deficiency conditions was investigated. The effects of jasmonic acid (JA) at 1.5 and 2.5 mM, and acibenzolar-S-methyl (benzothiadiazole, BTH) at 0.5 and 1.5 mM, applied separately or together, on the fecundity of T. urticae females in a laboratory test as well as on the population growth of the pest in a greenhouse experiment were determined. The influence of both elicitors on the induction of LOX and PAL gene expression was assessed in a parallel experiment using real-time PCR. Jasmonic acid showed significantly higher effectiveness in inducing apple tree resistance to T. urticae, as compared to BTH. This was particularly evident in the reduction in pest numbers that was observed in the greenhouse experiment and was also confirmed by increased LOX gene expression after treatment with JA. BTH induced the expression of the PAL gene more strongly than jasmonic acid; however, this was not reflected in the performance of the two-spotted spider mite in the laboratory and greenhouse experiments. It was also found that the antagonistic effect of BTH on JA might lead to decreased effectiveness of the jasmonic acid used to induce apple tree resistance to the two-spotted spider mite. Although nitrogen fertilization stimulated the development of spider mite populations, the resistance induction mechanism was more effective in N-fertilized plants, which was especially evident at the higher jasmonic acid concentration.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The role of alkaloids isolated from Rhazya stricta Decne (Apocynaceae family) (RS) in targeting genes involved in cancer and metastasis remains to be elucidated. OBJECTIVE:Identify and characterize new compounds from RS, which inhibit gene(s) involved in the survival, invasion, self-renewal, and metastatic processes of cancer cells. METHODS:Bioinformatics study was performed using HISAT2, stringtie, and ballgown pipeline to understand expressional differences between a normal epithelial cell line-MCF10A and MCF7. NMR and ATR-FTIR were performed to elucidate the structure of rhazyaminine (R.A), isolated from R stricta. Cell viability assay was performed using 0, 25, and 50 ?g/mL of total extract of R stricta (TERS) and R.A, respectively, for 0, 24, and 48 hours, followed by scratch assay. In addition, total RNA was isolated for RNA- seq analysis of MCF7 cell line treated with R.A followed by qRT-PCR analysis of Bcl-2 gene. RESULTS:Deptor, which is upregulated in MCF7 compared with MCF10A as found in our bioinformatics study was downregulated by R.A. Furthermore, R.A effectively reduced cell viability to around 50% ( P < .05) and restricted cell migration in scratch assay. Thirteen genes, related to metastasis and cancer stem cells, were downregulated by R.A according to RNA- seq analysis. Additionally, qRT-PCR validated the downregulation of Bcl-2 gene in R.A-treated cells by less than 0.5 folds ( P < .05). CONCLUSION:R.A successfully downregulated key genes involved in apoptosis, cell survival, epithelial-mesenchymal transition, cancer stem cell proliferation, and Wnt signal transduction pathway making it an excellent "lead candidate" molecule for in vivo proof-of-concept studies.