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Plant Cell Physiol. 2017 Jun 1;58(6):983-992. doi: 10.1093/pcp/pcx056.

Hydrogen Sulfide Regulates the Cytosolic/Nuclear Partitioning of Glyceraldehyde-3-Phosphate Dehydrogenase by Enhancing its Nuclear Localization.

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Instituto de Bioquímica Vegetal y Fotosíntesis, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas y Universidad de Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain.
Department of Plant Physiology, Osnabrück University, Osnabrück, Germany.


Hydrogen sulfide is an important signaling molecule comparable with nitric oxide and hydrogen peroxide in plants. The underlying mechanism of its action is unknown, although it has been proposed to be S-sulfhydration. This post-translational modification converts the thiol groups of cysteines within proteins to persulfides, resulting in functional changes of the proteins. In Arabidopsis thaliana, S-sulfhydrated proteins have been identified, including the cytosolic isoforms of glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase GapC1 and GapC2. In this work, we studied the regulation of sulfide on the subcellular localization of these proteins using two different approaches. We generated GapC1-green fluorescent protein (GFP) and GapC2-GFP transgenic plants in both the wild type and the des1 mutant defective in the l-cysteine desulfhydrase DES1, responsible for the generation of sulfide in the cytosol. The GFP signal was detected in the cytoplasm and the nucleus of epidermal cells, although with reduced nuclear localization in des1 compared with the wild type, and exogenous sulfide treatment resulted in similar signals in nuclei in both backgrounds. The second approach consisted of the immunoblot analysis of the GapC endogenous proteins in enriched nuclear and cytosolic protein extracts, and similar results were obtained. A significant reduction in the total amount of GapC in des1 in comparison with the wild type was determined and exogenous sulfide significantly increased the protein levels in the nuclei in both plants, with a stronger response in the wild type. Moreover, the presence of an S-sulfhydrated cysteine residue on GapC1 was demonstrated by mass spectrometry. We conclude that sulfide enhances the nuclear localization of glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase.


Arabidopsis; GFP fusion protein; Mass spectrometry; Nuclei-enriched extract; S-sulfhydration; des1 mutant

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