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Sci Rep. 2016 Oct 12;6:35246. doi: 10.1038/srep35246.

Nitric oxide participates in plant flowering repression by ascorbate.

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Institute of Plant Biology, National Taiwan University, Taipei 106, Taiwan.


In Oncidium, redox homeostasis involved in flowering is mainly due to ascorbic acid (AsA). Here, we discovered that Oncidium floral repression is caused by an increase in AsA-mediated NO levels, which is directed by the enzymatic activities of nitrate reductase (NaR) and nitrite reducatase (NiR). Through Solexa transcriptomic analysis of two libraries, 'pseudobulb with inflorescent bud' (PIB) and 'pseudobulb with axillary bud' (PAB), we identified differentially expressed genes related to NO metabolism. Subsequently, we showed a significant reduction of NaR enzymatic activities and NO levels during bolting and blooming stage, suggesting that NO controlled the phase transition and flowering process. Applying AsA to Oncidium PLB (protocorm-like bodies) significantly elevated the NO content and enzyme activities. Application of sodium nitroprusside (-NO donor) on Arabidopsis vtc1 mutant caused late flowering and expression level of flowering-associated genes (CO, FT and LFY) were reduced, suggesting NO signaling is vital for flowering repression. Conversely, the flowering time of noa1, an Arabidopsis NO-deficient mutant, was not altered after treatment with L-galacturonate, a precursor of AsA, suggesting AsA is required for NO-biosynthesis involved in the NO-mediated flowering-repression pathway. Altogether, Oncidium bolting is tightly regulated by AsA-mediated NO level and downregulation of transcriptional levels of NO metabolism genes.

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