Project description:Medicago truncatula is a model legume forage crop native to the arid and semi-arid environments of the Mediterranean. Given its drought-adapted nature, it is an ideal candidate to study the molecular and biochemical mechanisms conferring drought resistance in plants. Medicago plants were subjected to a progressive drought stress over 14?d of water withholding followed by rewatering under controlled environmental conditions. Based on physiological measurements of plant water status and changes in morphology, plants experienced mild, moderate and severe water stress before rehydration. Transcriptome analysis of roots and shoots from control, mildly, moderately and severely stressed, and rewatered plants, identified many thousands of genes that were altered in expression in response to drought. Many genes with expression tightly coupled to the plant water potential (i.e. drought intensity) were identified suggesting an involvement in Medicago drought adaptation responses. Metabolite profiling of drought-stressed plants revealed the presence of 135 polar and 165 non-polar compounds in roots and shoots. Combining Medicago metabolomic data with transcriptomic data yielded insight into the regulation of metabolic pathways operating under drought stress. Among the metabolites detected in drought-stressed Medicago plants, myo-inositol and proline had striking regulatory profiles indicating involvement in Medicago drought tolerance.
Project description:It is widely known that numerous adaptive responses of drought-stressed plants are stimulated by chemical messengers known as phytohormones. Jasmonic acid (JA) is one such phytohormone. But there are very few reports revealing its direct implication in drought related responses or its cross-talk with other phytohormones. In this study, we compared the morpho-physiological traits and the root proteome of a wild type (WT) rice plant with its JA biosynthesis mutant coleoptile photomorphogenesis 2 (cpm2), disrupted in the allene oxide cyclase (AOC) gene, for insights into the role of JA under drought. The mutant had higher stomatal conductance, higher water use efficiency and higher shoot ABA levels under severe drought as compared to the WT. Notably, roots of cpm2 were better developed compared to the WT under both, control and drought stress conditions. Root proteome was analyzed using the Tandem Mass Tag strategy to better understand this difference at the molecular level. Expectedly, AOC was unique but notably highly abundant under drought in the WT. Identification of other differentially abundant proteins (DAPs) suggested increased energy metabolism (i.e., increased mobilization of resources) and reactive oxygen species scavenging in cpm2 under drought. Additionally, various proteins involved in secondary metabolism, cell growth and cell wall synthesis were also more abundant in cpm2 roots. Proteome-guided transcript, metabolite, and histological analyses provided further insights into the favorable adaptations and responses, most likely orchestrated by the lack of JA, in the cpm2 roots. Our results in cpm2 are discussed in the light of JA crosstalk to other phytohormones. These results together pave the path for understanding the precise role of JA during drought stress in rice.
Project description:Late embryogenesis abundant (LEA) proteins are primarily found in plants stem, roots, and other organs and play significant roles in tolerance to several abiotic stresses. Plants synthesize a discrete set of LEA proteins in response to drought stress. In this study, the expression patterns of LEA genes were investigated in two advanced mutant rice genotypes subjected to the drought stress condition and different physiological traits including photosynthetic rate, leaf chlorophyll content, and photosystem II (PSII) photochemical efficiency (Fv/Fm) which were analyzed to confirm their drought tolerance. Five LEA genes (OsLEA1, OsLEA2, OsLEA3, OsLEA4, and OsLEA5) were used in the evaluation of rice genotypes and were significantly upregulated by more than 4-fold for MR219-4 and MR219-9. The upregulated genes by these two varieties showed high similarity with the drought-tolerant check variety, Aeron1. This indicates that these advanced mutant genotypes have better tolerance to drought stress. The changes in the expression level of LEA genes among the selected rice genotypes under drought stress were further confirmed. Hence, LEA genes could be served as a potential tool for drought tolerance determination in rice. MR219-4 and MR219-9 were found to be promising in breeding for drought tolerance as they offer better physiological adaptation to drought stress.
Project description:There is a widespread consensus that drought will mostly affect present and future agriculture negatively. Generating drought-tolerant crops is thus a high priority. However complicated the underlying genetic and regulatory networks for differences in plant performance under stress are, they would be reflected in straightforward differences in primary metabolites. This is because primary metabolites such as amino acids and sugars form the building blocks of all pathways and processes for growth, development, reproduction, and environmental responses. Comparison of such differences was undertaken between the parental line and a near-isogenic line of qDTY 12.1 , a QTL for rice yield under drought. The comparison was informative regarding the effect of the QTL in three genetic backgrounds: donor, recipient, and improved recipient, thus illustrating the gene × gene (G × G) interactions. Such a comparison when extended to well-watered and drought conditions illustrated the gene × environment (G × E) interactions. Assessment of such G × G and G × E responses in roots, flag leaves, and spikelets added a yet more informative dimension of tissue-specific responses to drought, mediated by qDTY 12.1 . Data on variation in primary metabolites subjected to ANOVA, Tukey's test, Welch's t test, and PCA underscored the importance of the roots and demonstrated concordance between variation in metabolites and morpho-physiological responses to drought. Results suggested that for gainful insights into rice yield under drought, rather than vegetative stage drought tolerance, multiple tissues and genotypes must be assessed at the reproductive stage to avoid misleading conclusions about using particular metabolites or related genes and proteins as candidates or markers for drought tolerance.
Project description:Iron (Fe) is essential but harmful for plants at toxic level. However, how wheat plants tolerate excess Fe remains vague. This study aims at elucidating the mechanisms underlying tolerance to excess Fe in wheat. Higher Fe concentration caused morpho-physiological retardation in BR 26 (sensitive) but not in BR 27 (tolerant). Phytosiderophore and 2-deoxymugineic acid showed no changes in BR 27 but significantly increased in BR 26 due to excess Fe. Further, expression of TaSAMS. TaDMAS1, and TaYSL15 significantly downregulated in BR 27 roots, while these were upregulated in BR 26 under excess Fe. It confirms that inhibition of phytosiderophore directs less Fe accumulation in BR 27. However, phytochelatin and expression of TaPCS1 and TaMT1 showed no significant induction in response to excess Fe. Furthermore, excess Fe showed increased catalase, peroxidase, and glutathione reductase activities along with glutathione, cysteine, and proline accumulation in roots in BR 27. Interestingly, BR 27 self-grafts and plants having BR 26 rootstock attached to BR 27 scion had no Fe-toxicity induced adverse effect on morphology but showed BR 27 type expressions, confirming that shoot-derived signal triggering Fe-toxicity tolerance in roots. Finally, auxin inhibitor applied with higher Fe concentration caused a significant decline in morpho-physiological parameters along with increased TaSAMS and TaDMAS1 expression in roots of BR 27, revealing the involvement of auxin signaling in response to excess Fe. These findings propose that tolerance to excess Fe in wheat is attributed to the regulation of phytosiderophore limiting Fe acquisition along with increased antioxidant defense in roots driven by shoot-derived auxin signaling.
Project description:Drought stress is one of the major natural challenges in the main tea-producing regions of China. The tea plant (Camellia sinensis) is a traditional beverage plant whose growth status directly affects tea quality. Recent studies have revealed that microRNAs (miRNAs) play key functions in plant growth and development. Although some miRNAs have been identified in C. sinensis, little is known about their roles in the drought stress response of tea plants.Physiological characterization of Camellia sinensis 'Tieguanyin' under drought stress showed that the malondialdehyde concentration and electrical conductivity of leaves of drought-stressed plants increased when the chlorophyll concentration decreased under severe drought stress. We sequenced four small-RNA (sRNA) libraries constructed from leaves of plants subjected to four different treatments, normal water supply (CK); mild drought stress (T1); moderate drought stress (T2) and severe drought stress (T3). A total of 299 known mature miRNA sequences and 46 novel miRNAs were identified. Gene Ontology enrichment analysis revealed that most of the differentially expressed-miRNA target genes were related to regulation of transcription. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes analysis revealed that the most highly enriched pathways under drought stress were D-alanine metabolism, sulfur metabolism, and mineral absorption pathways. Real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) was used to validate the expression patterns of 21 miRNAs (2 up-regulated and 19 down-regulated under drought stress). The observed co-regulation of the miR166 family and their targets ATHB-14-like and ATHB-15-like indicate the presence of negative feedback regulation in miRNA pathways.Analyses of drought-responsive miRNAs in tea plants showed that most of differentially expressed-miRNA target genes were related to regulation of transcription. The results of study revealed that the expressions of phase-specific miRNAs vary with morphological, physiological, and biochemical changes. These findings will be useful for research on drought resistance and provide insights into the mechanisms of drought adaptation and resistance in C. sinensis.
Project description:Thyme (<i>Thymus spp</i>.) volatiles predominantly consisting of monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes, serve as antimicrobial, antiseptic and antioxidant in phytomedicine. They also play a key role in plants as secondary metabolites via their potential role against herbivores, attracting pollinators and abiotic stress tolerance. Plant volatiles are affected by different environmental factors including drought. Here, the effect of prolonged water deficit stress on volatile composition was studied on the sensitive and tolerant thyme plant cultivars (<i>T. vulgaris</i> Var. Wagner and <i>T. vulgaris</i> Var. Varico3, respectively). Volatile sampling along with morpho-physiological parameters such as soil moisture, water potential, shoot dry weight, photosynthetic rate and water content measurements were performed on one-month-old plants subsequent to water withholding at 4-day intervals until the plants wilted. The tolerant and sensitive plants had clearly different responses at physiological and volatile levels. The most stress-induced changes on the plants' physiological traits occurred in the photosynthetic rates, where the tolerant plants maintained their photosynthesis similar to the control ones until the 8<sup>th</sup> day of the drought stress period. While the analysis of the volatile compounds (VOCs) of the sensitive thyme plants displayed the same pattern for almost all of them, in the tolerant plants, the comparison of the pattern of changes in the tolerant plants revealed that the changes could be classified into three separate groups. Our experimental and theoretical studies totally revealed that the most determinant compounds involved in drought stress adaptation included ?-phellandrene, O-cymene, ?-terpinene and ?-caryophyelene. Overall, it can be concluded that in the sensitive plants trade-off between growth and defense, the tolerant ones simultaneously activate their stress response mechanism and continue their growth.
Project description:Drought is a major limiting factor of crop productivity worldwide and its incidence is predicted to increase under climate change. Drought adaptation of cool-season grasses is thus a major challenge to secure the agricultural productivity under current and future climate conditions. Endophytes are non-pathogenic plant-associated bacteria that can play an important role in conferring resistance and improving plant tolerance to drought. In this study, the effect of inoculation of the bacterial endophyte Bacillus subtilis strain B26 on growth, water status, photosynthetic activity and metabolism of timothy (Phleum pratense L.) subjected to drought stress was investigated under controlled conditions. Under both drought-stress and non-stressed conditions, strain B26 successfully colonized the internal tissues of timothy and had a positive impact on plant growth. Exposure of inoculated plant to a 8-week drought-stress led to significant increase in shoot and root biomass by 26.6 and 63.8%, and in photosynthesis and stomatal conductance by 55.2 and 214.9% respectively, compared to non-inoculated plants grown under similar conditions. There was a significant effect of the endophyte on plant metabolism; higher levels of several sugars, notably sucrose and fructans and an increase of key amino acids such as, asparagine, glutamic acid and glutamine were recorded in shoots and roots of colonized plants compared to non-colonized ones. The accumulation of the non-protein amino acid GABA in shoots of stressed plants and in roots of stressed and unstressed plants was increased in the presence of the endophyte. Taken together, our results indicate that B. subtilis B26 improves timothy growth under drought stress through the modification of osmolyte accumulation in roots and shoots. These results will contribute to the development of a microbial agent to improve the yield of grass species including forage crops and cereals exposed to environmental stresses.
Project description:Understanding the contrasting biochemical changes in different plant parts in response to drought can help to formulate smart strategies to develop drought tolerant genotypes. The current study used metabolomics and physiological approaches to understand the differential biochemical changes coupled with physiological adjustments in leaves and roots to cope with drought stress in two wheat genotypes, LA754 (drought tolerant) and AGS2038 (drought sensitive). The gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis and physiological trait estimation were performed in the roots and leaves after drought imposition. Drought induced reduction was observed in all physiological and yield related traits. In LA754, higher numbers of metabolites were altered in leaves (45) compared to roots (20) which indicates that plants allocated more resources to leaves in tolerant genotype. In addition, the metabolic components of the root were less affected by the stress which supports the idea that the roots are more drought tolerant than the leaf or shoot. In AGS2038, thirty and twenty eight metabolites were altered in the leaves and roots, respectively. This indicates that the sensitive genotype compromised resource allocation to leaves, rather allocated more towards roots. Tryptophan, valine, citric acid, fumaric acid, and malic acid showed higher accumulation in leaf in LA754, but decreased in the root, while glyceric acid was highly accumulated in the root, but not in the leaf. The results demonstrated that the roots and shoots have a different metabolic composition, and shoot metabolome is more variable than the root metabolome. Though the present study demonstrated that the metabolic response of shoots to drought contrasts with that of roots, some growth metabolites (protein, sugar, etc) showed a mirror increase in both parts. Protein synthesis and energy cycle was active in both organs, and the organs were metabolically activated to enhance water uptake and maintain growth to mitigate the effect of drought.
Project description:The protective role of melatonin in plants against various abiotic stresses have been widely demonstrated, but poorly explored in organ-specific responses and the transmission of melatonin signals across organs. In this study, the effects of melatonin with the root-irrigation method and the leaf-spraying method on the antioxidant system and photosynthetic machinery in maize seedlings under drought stress were investigated. The results showed that drought stress led to the rise in reactive oxygen species (ROS), severe cell death, and degradation of D1 protein, which were mitigated by the melatonin application. The application of melatonin improved the photosynthetic activities and alleviated the oxidative damages of maize seedlings under the drought stress. Compared with the leaf-spraying method, the root-irrigation method was more effective on enhancing drought tolerance. Moreover, maize seedlings made organ-specific physiological responses to the drought stress, and the physiological effects of melatonin varied with the dosage, application methods and plant organs. The signals of exogenous melatonin received by roots could affect the stress responses of leaves, and the melatonin signals perceived by leaves also led to changes in physiological metabolisms in roots under the stress. Consequently, the whole seedlings coordinated the different parts and made a systemic acclimation against the drought stress. Melatonin as a protective agent against abiotic stresses has a potential application prospect in the agricultural industry.