Low Temperature Signal Transduction During Cold Acclimation of Alfalfa

  • Rajinder S. Dhindsa
  • Antonio F. Monroy
  • Veena Sangwan
  • Wojciech Kawczynski
  • Etienne Labbé


Cold acclimation is the development of increased freezing tolerance in competent genotypes upon exposure to low but non-freezing temperatures over a period of days or weeks (Levitt, 1980). In nature, it is triggerred by declining temperature during the onset of winter and is quickly lost as temperature rises during spring. Cold acclimation can be reproduced in the laboratory by exposing the seedlings or cell suspension cultures to 2–5°C for a prolonged period and rapid deacclimation can be observed on returning the samples to 25°C.


Cold Acclimation Freezing Tolerance Fatty Acid Desaturase Gene Alfalfa Cell Cold Induction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Braam J, Davis RW (1990) Rain-wind-and touch-induced expression of calmodulin-related genes in Arabidop-sis. Cell 60: 357–364PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Brewster JL, Valoir TD, Dwyer ND, Winter E, Gustin MC (1993) An osmosensing signal transduction pathway in yeast. Science 259: 1760–1763PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bush DS (1995) Calcium regulation in plant cells and its role in signaling. Annu Rev Plant Physiol Plant Mol Biol 46: 95–122CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Datta N, Cashmore AR (1989) Binding of a pea nuclear protein to propmoters of certain photoregulated genes is modulated by phosphorylation. Plant Cell 1: 1069–1077PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Ding JP, Pickard BG (1993) Modulation of mechanosensitive calcium-selective cation channels by temperature. Plant J 3: 713–720PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Felix G, Grosskopf DG, Regenass M, Boiler T (1991) Rapid changes in protein phosphorylation are involved in transduction of the elicitor signal in plant cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 88: 8831–8834PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Guy CL (1990) Cold acclimation and freezing stress tolerance: Role of protein metabolism. Annu Rev Plant Physiol Plant Mol Biol 41: 187–223CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Iwasaki T, Yamaguchi-Shinozaki K, Shinozaki K (1995) Identification of a cis-regulatory region of a gene in Arabidopsis thaliana whose induction by dehydration is mediated by abscisic acid and requires protein synthesis. Mol Gen Genet 247: 391–398PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Jonak C, Kiegerl S, Ligterink W, Barker PJ, Huskisson NS, Hirt H (1996) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 93: 11274–11279PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Kawczynski W, Dhindsa RS (1996) Alaflfa nuclei contain cold-responsive phosphoproteins and accumulate heat-stable proteins during cold treatment of seedlings. Plant Cell Physiol 37: 1204–1210CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Knight H, Trewavas AJ, Knight MR (1996) Cold calcium signaling in Arabidopsis involves two cellular pools and a change in calcium signature after acclimation. Plant Cell 8: 489–503PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Knight MR, Smith SM, Trewavas AJ (1992) Wind-induced plant motion immediately increases cytosolic calcium. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 89: 4967–4971PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Knight MR, Campbell AK, Smith SM, Trewavas AJ (1991) Transgenic plant aequorin reports the effects of touch and cold shock and elicitors on cytoplasmic calcium. Nature 352: 524–526PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Kurkela S, Borg-Franck M (1992) Structure and expression of kin2, one of two cold-and ABA-induced genes of Arabidopsis thaliana. Plant Mol Biol 19: 689–692PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kurkela S, Franck M (1990) Cloning and characterization of a cold-and ABA-induced Arabidopsis gene. Plant Mol Biol 15: 137–144PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Levitt J (1980) Responses of Plants to Environmental Stress, Vol 1: Chilling, freezing, and high Temperature stress. (New York: Academic Press)Google Scholar
  17. Los DA, Horvath I, Vigh L, Murata N (1993) The temperature-dependent expression of the desaturase gene desA in Synechocystis PCC6803. FEBS Lett 318: 57–60PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Maeda T, Wurgler-Murphy SM, Saito H (1994) A two-component system that regulates an osmosensing MAP kinase cascade in yeast. Nature 369: 242–245PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Mason RP, Moisey DM, Shajenko L (1992) Cholesterol alters the binding of calcium channel blockers to the membrane lipid bilayer. Mol Pharmacol 41: 315–321PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Miller AJ, Vogg G, Sanders D (1990) Cytosolic calcium homeostasis in fungi: Roles of plasma membrane transport and intracellular sequestration of calcium. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 87: 9348–9352PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Mohapatra SS, Wolfraim L, Poole RJ, Dhindsa RS (1989) Molecular cloning and relationship to freezing tolerance of cold acclimation-specific genes of alfalfa. Plant Physiol 89: 375–380PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Monroy AF, Dhindsa RS (1995) Low temperature signal transduction: Induction of cold acclimation-specific genes of alfalfa by calcium at 25°C. Plant Cell 7: 321–331PubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Monroy AF, Sarhan F, Dhindsa RS (1993) Cold-induced changes in freezing tolerance, protein phosphorylation, and gene expression: Evidence for a role of calcium. Plant Physiol 102: 1227–1235PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Monroy AF, Castonguay Y, Laberge S, Sarhan F, Vezina LP, Dhindsa RS (1993) A new cold-induced alfalfa gene is associated with enhanced hardening at subzero temperature. Plant Physiol 102: 873–879PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Monroy AF, Sangwan V, Dhindsa RS (1997) Low temperature signal transduction during cold acclimation: Protein phosphatase type 2A is an early target for cold-inactivation. (Submitted)Google Scholar
  26. Monroy AF, Labbé E, Dhindsa RS (1997) Low temperature perception in plants: Effects of cold on protein phosphorylation in cell-free extracts. (Submitted)Google Scholar
  27. Nishida I, Murata N (1996) Chilling sensitivity in plants and cyanobacteria: The crucial contribution of membrane lipids. Annu Rev Plant Physiol Plant Mol Biol 47: 541–568PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Powers T, Noller HF (1995) A temperature-dependent conformational rearrangement in the ribosomal protein S4 16S rRNA complex. J Biol Chem 270: 1238–1242PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Sarokin LP, Chua NH (1992) Binding sites fot two novel phosphoproteins, 3AF5 and 3AF3, are required for rbcSSA expression. Plant Cell 4: 473–483PubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. Sato N, Murata N (1981) Studies on the temperature shift-induced desaturation of fatty acids in monogalactosyl diacylglycerol in the blue-green alga (cyanobacterium), Anabaena variabilis. Plant Cell Physiol 22: 1043–1050Google Scholar
  31. Shacklock PS, Read ND, Trewavas AJ (1992) Cytosolic free calcium mediates red light-induced photomorpho-genesis. Nature 358: 753–755CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Smith RD, Walker JC (1996) Plant protein phosphatases. Annu Rev Plant Physiol Plant Mol Biol 47: 101–125PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Tahtiharju S, Sangwan V, Monroy AF, Dhindsa RS, Borg M (1997) calcium signaling mediates the induction of kin genes in cold acclimating Arabidopsis thaliana. Planta (in press)Google Scholar
  34. Trewavas AJ, Gilroy S (1991) Signal transduction in plant cells. Trends Genet 7: 356–361PubMedGoogle Scholar
  35. Vigh L, Los DA, Horvath I, Murata N (1993) The primary signal in the biological perception of temperature: Pd-catalyzed hydrogenation of membrane lipids stimulated the expression of the desA gene in Synechocys-tis PCC6803. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 90: 9090–9094PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Wolfraim LA, Langis R, Tyson H, Dhindsa RS (1993) cDNA sequence, expression and transcript stability of a cold acclimation-specific gene, cas18, of alfalfa (Medicago falcata) cells. Plant Physiol 101: 1275–1282PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Yamaguchi-Shinozaki K, Urao T, Shinozaki K (1995) Regulation of genes that are induced by drought stress in Arabidopsis thaliana. J Plant Res 108: 127–136CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Yamaguchi-Shinozaki K, Shinozaki K (1994) A novel cis-acting element in an Arabidopsis gene is involved in responsiveness to drought, low temperature, or high-salt stress. Plant Cell 6: 251–264PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rajinder S. Dhindsa
    • 1
  • Antonio F. Monroy
    • 1
  • Veena Sangwan
    • 1
  • Wojciech Kawczynski
    • 1
  • Etienne Labbé
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiologyMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada

Personalised recommendations