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      Genome-wide identification and characterization of the Populus WRKY transcription factor family and analysis of their expression in response to biotic and abiotic stresses


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          This study presents the genome-wide characterization of the Populus WRKY family under biotic and abiotic stresses. Overexpression of an SA-inducible gene, PtrWRKY89, enhanced resistance to pathogens in transgenic poplar.


          WRKY proteins are a large family of regulators involved in various developmental and physiological processes, especially in coping with diverse biotic and abiotic stresses. In this study, 100 putative PtrWRKY genes encoded the proteins contained in the complete WRKY domain in Populus. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the members of this superfamily among poplar, Arabidopsis, and other species were divided into three groups with several subgroups based on the structures of the WRKY protein sequences. Various cis-acting elements related to stress and defence responses were found in the promoter regions of PtrWRKY genes by promoter analysis. High-throughput transcriptomic analyses identified that 61 of the PtrWRKY genes were induced by biotic and abiotic treatments, such as Marssonina brunnea, salicylic acid (SA), methyl jasmonate (MeJA), wounding, cold, and salinity. Among these PtrWRKY genes, transcripts of 46 selected genes were observed in different tissues, including roots, stems, and leaves. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis further confirmed the induced expression of 18 PtrWRKY genes by one or more stress treatments. The overexpression of an SA-inducible gene, PtrWRKY89, accelerated expression of PR protein genes and improved resistance to pathogens in transgenic poplar, suggesting that PtrWRKY89 is a regulator of an SA-dependent defence-signalling pathway in poplar. Taken together, our results provided significant information for improving the resistance and stress tolerance of woody plants.

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          We report the draft genome sequence of the model moss Physcomitrella patens and compare its features with those of flowering plants, from which it is separated by more than 400 million years, and unicellular aquatic algae. This comparison reveals genomic changes concomitant with the evolutionary movement to land, including a general increase in gene family complexity; loss of genes associated with aquatic environments (e.g., flagellar arms); acquisition of genes for tolerating terrestrial stresses (e.g., variation in temperature and water availability); and the development of the auxin and abscisic acid signaling pathways for coordinating multicellular growth and dehydration response. The Physcomitrella genome provides a resource for phylogenetic inferences about gene function and for experimental analysis of plant processes through this plant's unique facility for reverse genetics.
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            Environmental stress factors such as drought, elevated temperature, salinity and rising CO₂ affect plant growth and pose a growing threat to sustainable agriculture. This has become a hot issue due to concerns about the effects of climate change on plant resources, biodiversity and global food security. Plant adaptation to stress involves key changes in the '-omic' architecture. Here, we present an overview of the physiological and molecular programs in stress adaptation focusing on how genes, proteins and metabolites change after individual and multiple environmental stresses. We address the role which '-omics' research, coupled to systems biology approaches, can play in future research on plants seemingly unable to adapt as well as those which can tolerate climatic change. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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              Deep RNA sequencing at single base-pair resolution reveals high complexity of the rice transcriptome.

              Understanding the dynamics of eukaryotic transcriptome is essential for studying the complexity of transcriptional regulation and its impact on phenotype. However, comprehensive studies of transcriptomes at single base resolution are rare, even for modern organisms, and lacking for rice. Here, we present the first transcriptome atlas for eight organs of cultivated rice. Using high-throughput paired-end RNA-seq, we unambiguously detected transcripts expressing at an extremely low level, as well as a substantial number of novel transcripts, exons, and untranslated regions. An analysis of alternative splicing in the rice transcriptome revealed that alternative cis-splicing occurred in approximately 33% of all rice genes. This is far more than previously reported. In addition, we also identified 234 putative chimeric transcripts that seem to be produced by trans-splicing, indicating that transcript fusion events are more common than expected. In-depth analysis revealed a multitude of fusion transcripts that might be by-products of alternative splicing. Validation and chimeric transcript structural analysis provided evidence that some of these transcripts are likely to be functional in the cell. Taken together, our data provide extensive evidence that transcriptional regulation in rice is vastly more complex than previously believed.

                Author and article information

                J Exp Bot
                J. Exp. Bot
                Journal of Experimental Botany
                Oxford University Press (UK )
                December 2014
                23 September 2014
                23 September 2014
                : 65
                : 22
                : 6629-6644
                1Key Laboratory of Eco-environments of Three Gorges Reservoir Region, Ministry of Education, Chongqing Key Laboratory of Transgenic Plant and Safety Control, Institute of Resources Botany, School of Life Sciences, Southwest University , Chongqing 400715, China
                2Key Laboratory of Adaptation and Evolution of Plateau Biota, Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences , 810008 Xining, China
                3College of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Southwest University , Chongqing, 400716, China
                Author notes
                * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: kemingl@ 123456swu.edu.cn
                © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/), which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Page count
                Pages: 16
                Research Paper


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