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Plant Physiol. 2013 Sep;163(1):118-34. doi: 10.1104/pp.113.217547. Epub 2013 Jul 25.

Abscisic acid- and stress-induced highly proline-rich glycoproteins regulate root growth in rice.

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Graduate Institute of Life Sciences, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei 114, Taiwan, Republic of China.


In the root of rice (Oryza sativa), abscisic acid (ABA) treatment, salinity, or water deficit stress induces the expression of a family of four genes, REPETITIVE PROLINE-RICH PROTEIN (RePRP). These genes encode two subclasses of novel proline-rich glycoproteins with highly repetitive PX₁PX₂ motifs, RePRP1 and RePRP2. RePRP orthologs exist only in monocotyledonous plants, and their functions are virtually unknown. Rice RePRPs are heavily glycosylated with arabinose and glucose on multiple hydroxyproline residues. They are significantly different from arabinogalactan proteins that have glycan chains composed of arabinose and galactose. Transient and stable expressions of RePRP-green fluorescent protein reveal that a fraction of this protein is localized to the plasma membrane. In rice roots, ABA treatment increases RePRP expression preferentially in the elongation zone. Overexpression of RePRP in transgenic rice reduces root cell elongation in the absence of ABA, similar to the effect of ABA on wild-type roots. Conversely, simultaneous knockdown of the expression of RePRP1 and RePRP2 reduces the root sensitivity to ABA, indicating that RePRP proteins play an essential role in ABA/stress regulation of root growth and development. Moreover, rice RePRPs specifically interact with a polysaccharide, arabinogalactan, in a dosage-dependent manner. It is suggested that RePRP1 and RePRP2 are functionally redundant suppressors of root cell expansion and probably act through interactions with cell wall components near the plasma membrane.

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