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J Integr Plant Biol. 2013 Oct;55(10):892-901. doi: 10.1111/jipb.12060. Epub 2013 Aug 26.

Involvement of histone modifications in plant abiotic stress responses.

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Key Laboratory of Plant Resources Conservation and Sustainable Utilization, South China Botanical Garden, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, 510650, China; University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100049, China.


As sessile organisms, plants encounter various environmental stimuli including abiotic stresses during their lifecycle. To survive under adverse conditions, plants have evolved intricate mechanisms to perceive external signals and respond accordingly. Responses to various stresses largely depend on the plant capacity to modulate the transcriptome rapidly and specifically. A number of studies have shown that the molecular mechanisms driving the responses of plants to environmental stresses often depend on nucleosome histone post-translational modifications including histone acetylation, methylation, ubiquitination, and phosphorylation. The combined effects of these modifications play an essential role in the regulation of stress responsive gene expression. In this review, we highlight our current understanding of the epigenetic mechanisms of histone modifications and their roles in plant abiotic stress response.


Abiotic stresses; gene regulation; histone modifications

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