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Phytochemistry. 2015 May;113:41-9. doi: 10.1016/j.phytochem.2014.05.017. Epub 2014 Jun 16.

Stress-induced expression of NICOTINE2-locus genes and their homologs encoding Ethylene Response Factor transcription factors in tobacco.

Author information

1
Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Nara Institute of Science and Technology, Takayama 8916-5, Ikoma, Nara 630-0101, Japan. Electronic address: t-shouji@bs.naist.jp.
2
Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Nara Institute of Science and Technology, Takayama 8916-5, Ikoma, Nara 630-0101, Japan.

Abstract

Plants have evolved diverse defense metabolites as adaptations to biotic and abiotic stresses. The defense alkaloid nicotine is produced in Nicotiana tabacum (tobacco) and its biosynthesis is elicited by jasmonates in the roots. At least seven jasmonate-responsive genes that encode transcription factors of the Ethylene Response Factor (ERF) family are clustered at the nicotine-regulatory locus NICOTINE2 (NIC2) in the tobacco genome. A subset of the NIC2-locus ERFs and their homologs, including ERF189 and ERF199, have been shown to be most effective in controlling nicotine biosynthetic pathway genes. Herein reported is that the ERF genes of this group, other than ERF189 and ERF199, were strongly induced by NaCl in tobacco hairy roots, although salt stress had no effect on expression of nicotine biosynthesis genes. Abscisic acid and osmotic stress also increased expression of a subset of these NaCl-inducible ERF genes. Promoter expression analysis in transgenic tobacco hairy roots confirmed that while methyl jasmonate (MJ) activated the promoters of ERF29, ERF210 and ERF199, salt stress up-regulated the promoters of only ERF29 and ERF210, but not ERF199. The protein biosynthesis inhibitor cycloheximide induced expression of the ERFs, and simultaneous addition of MJ and cycloheximide showed synergistic effects. These results indicate that, after several gene duplication events, the NIC2-locus ERFs and possibly their homologs appear to have diverged in their responses to jasmonates and various environmental inputs, including salt stress, and may have evolved to regulate distinct metabolic processes and cellular responses.

KEYWORDS:

ERF transcription factors; Jasmonates; Nicotiana tabacum; Nicotine; Salt stress; Solanaceae; Tobacco

PMID:
24947337
DOI:
10.1016/j.phytochem.2014.05.017
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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