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Transcriptional and metabolic changes in the desiccation tolerant plant Craterostigma plantagineum during recurrent exposures to dehydration

  • Xun Liu
  • Dinakar Challabathula
  • Wenli Quan
  • Dorothea Bartels
Original Article
  • 46 Downloads

Abstract

Main conclusion

Multiple dehydration/rehydration treatments improve the adaptation of Craterostigma plantagineum to desiccation by accumulating stress-inducible transcripts, proteins and metabolites. These molecules serve as stress imprints or memory and can lead to increased stress tolerance.

It has been reported that repeated exposure to dehydration may generate stronger reactions during a subsequent dehydration treatment in plants. This stimulated us to address the question whether the desiccation tolerant resurrection plant Craterostigma plantagineum has a stress memory. The expression of four representative stress-related genes gradually increased during four repeated dehydration/rehydration treatments in C. plantagineum. These genes reflect a transcriptional memory and are trainable genes. In contrast, abundance of chlorophyll synthesis/degradation-related transcripts did not change during dehydration and remained at a similar level as in the untreated tissues during the recovery phase. During the four dehydration/rehydration treatments the level of ROS pathway-related transcripts, superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity, proline, and sucrose increased, whereas H2O2 content and electrolyte leakage decreased. Malondialdehyde (MDA) content did not change during the dehydration, which indicates a gain of stress tolerance. At the protein level, increased expression of four representative stress-related proteins showed that the activated stress memory can persist over several days. The phenomenon described here could be a general feature of dehydration stress memory responses in resurrection plants.

Keywords

Dehydration stress Resurrection plants Stress memory Stress-related genes 

Abbreviations

ALAD

5-Aminolevulinic acid dehydratase

APX

Ascorbate peroxidase

BHT

Butylated hydroxytoluene

CAT

Catalase

CHLG

Chlorophyll synthase

CHLM

Mg-protoporphyrin IX methyltransferase

CPO

Coprogen oxidase

Cu/Zn-SOD

Copper/zinc superoxide dismutase

EDR1

Early dehydration responsive 1

EF1a

Elongation factor 1-alpha

GC/MS

Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry

GSA

Glutamate-1-semialdehyde aminotransferase

LEA

Late embryogenesis abundant

MDA

Malondialdehyde

Mn-SOD

Manganese superoxide dismutase

NBT

4-Nitro-blue tetrazolium chloride

NYE1

Non-yellowing 1

OD

Optical density

PaO

Pheophorbide a oxygenase

PBGD

Porphobilinogen deaminase

PPH

Pheophytinase

RCCR

Red chlorophyll catabolite reductase

ROS

Reactive oxygen species

RWC

Relative water content

SOD

Superoxide dismutase

TBA

Thiobarbituric acid

Notes

Acknowledgements

Xun Liu is supported by the China Scholarship Council (2016-2020). Dinakar C acknowledges the support from the Indian National Science Academy (INSA-India) and Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft-GZ:BA712/19-1 (DFG, Germany). The authors would like to thank Christiane Buchholz for growing the plants and Prof. Dr. Lukas Schreiber and Dr. Viktoria Zeisler-Diehl (IZMB, University of Bonn) for supporting the measurements of sucrose and octulose.

Supplementary material

425_2018_3058_MOESM1_ESM.jpg (2.7 mb)
Fig. S1 Thin layer chromatography of sugars extracted from C. plantagineum leaves
425_2018_3058_MOESM2_ESM.jpg (2.7 mb)
Fig. S2 (a) The chromatogram of sucrose (peak 3) and octulose (peak 2) extracted from C. plantagineum leaves, and the internal standard xylitol (peak 1). The fragmentation patterns of xylitol (b), octulose (c) and sucrose (d)
425_2018_3058_MOESM3_ESM.docx (18 kb)
Supplementary material 3 (DOCX 18 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xun Liu
    • 1
  • Dinakar Challabathula
    • 2
  • Wenli Quan
    • 3
  • Dorothea Bartels
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Molecular Physiology and Biotechnology of Plants (IMBIO)University of BonnBonnGermany
  2. 2.Department of Life Sciences, School of Basic and Applied SciencesCentral University of Tamil NaduThiruvarurIndia
  3. 3.Key Laboratory for Quality Control of Characteristic Fruits and Vegetables of Hubei Province, College of Life Science and TechnologyHubei Engineering UniversityXiaoganChina

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