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Plant Physiol. 2013 May;162(1):333-46. doi: 10.1104/pp.113.215194. Epub 2013 Apr 8.

Nuclear accumulation of cytosolic glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase in cadmium-stressed Arabidopsis roots.

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Department of Biology, University of Padua, 35131 Padua, Italy.


NAD-dependent glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) is a ubiquitous enzyme involved in the glycolytic pathway. It has been widely demonstrated that mammalian GAPDH, in addition to its role in glycolysis, fulfills alternative functions mainly linked to its susceptibility to oxidative posttranslational modifications. Here, we investigated the responses of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) cytosolic GAPDH isoenzymes GAPC1 and GAPC2 to cadmium-induced stress in seedlings roots. GAPC1 was more responsive to cadmium than GAPC2 at the transcriptional level. In vivo, cadmium treatments induced different concomitant effects, including (1) nitric oxide accumulation, (2) cytosolic oxidation (e.g. oxidation of the redox-sensitive Green fluorescent protein2 probe), (3) activation of the GAPC1 promoter, (4) GAPC1 protein accumulation in enzymatically inactive form, and (5) strong relocalization of GAPC1 to the nucleus. All these effects were detected in the same zone of the root tip. In vitro, GAPC1 was inactivated by either nitric oxide donors or hydrogen peroxide, but no inhibition was directly provided by cadmium. Interestingly, nuclear relocalization of GAPC1 under cadmium-induced oxidative stress was stimulated, rather than inhibited, by mutating into serine the catalytic cysteine of GAPC1 (C155S), excluding an essential role of GAPC1 nitrosylation in the mechanism of nuclear relocalization, as found in mammalian cells. Although the function of GAPC1 in the nucleus is unknown, our results suggest that glycolytic GAPC1, through its high sensitivity to the cellular redox state, may play a role in oxidative stress signaling or protection in plants.

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