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Planta. 2012 Aug;236(2):355-69. doi: 10.1007/s00425-012-1611-4. Epub 2012 Feb 25.

Trehalose metabolism is activated upon chilling in grapevine and might participate in Burkholderia phytofirmans induced chilling tolerance.

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Unité de Recherche Vignes et Vins de Champagne (EA 2069), Laboratoire de Stress, Défense et Reproduction des Plantes, UFR Sciences Exactes et Naturelles, Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, BP 1039, 51687, Reims Cedex 2, France.


During the last decade, there has been growing interest in the role of trehalose metabolism in tolerance to abiotic stress in higher plants, especially cold stress. So far, this metabolism has not yet been studied in Vitis vinifera L., despite the economic importance of this crop. The goal of this paper was to investigate the involvement of trehalose metabolism in the response of grapevine to chilling stress, and to compare the response in plants bacterised with Burkholderia phytofirmans strain PsJN, a plant growth-promoting rhizobacterium that confers grapevine chilling tolerance, with mock-inoculated plants. In silico analysis revealed that the V. vinifera L. genome contains genes encoding the enzymes responsible for trehalose synthesis and degradation. Transcript analysis showed that these genes were differentially expressed in various plant organs, and we also characterised their response to chilling. Both trehalose and trehalose 6-phosphate (T6P) were present in grapevine tissues and showed a distinct pattern of accumulation upon chilling. Our results suggest a role for T6P as the main active molecule in the metabolism upon chilling, with a possible link with sucrose metabolism. Furthermore, plants colonised by B. phytofirmans and cultivated at 26°C accumulated T6P and trehalose in stems and leaves at concentrations similar to non-bacterised plants exposed to chilling temperatures for 1 day. Overall, our data suggest that T6P and trehalose accumulate upon chilling stress in grapevine and might participate in the resistance to chilling stress conferred by B. phytofirmans.

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