Enhanced seed production under prolonged heat stress conditions in Arabidopsis thaliana plants deficient in cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase 2

Nobuhiro Suzuki, Gad Miller, Hiroe Sejima, Jeffery Harper, Ron Mittler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

92 Scopus citations

Abstract

Reactive oxygen species play a key role in the response of plants to abiotic stress conditions. Their level is controlled in Arabidopsis thaliana by a large network of genes that includes the H2O2-scavenging enzymes cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase (APX) 1 and 2. Although the function of APX1 has been established under different growth conditions, genetic evidence for APX2 function, as well as for the mode of cooperation between APX1 and APX2, is very limited. This study characterized the response of Arabidopsis mutants deficient in APX1, APX2, and APX1/APX2 to heat, salinity, light, and oxidative stresses. The findings reveal that deficiency in APX2 resulted in a decreased tolerance to light stress, as well as an enhanced tolerance to salinity and oxidative stresses. Interestingly, plants lacking APX2 were more sensitive to heat stress at the seedling stage, but more tolerant to heat stress at the reproductive stage. Cooperation between APX1 and APX2 was evident during oxidative stress, but not during light, salinity, or heat stress. The findings demonstrate a role for APX2 in the response of plants to light, heat, salinity, and oxidative stresses. The finding that plants lacking APX2 produced more seeds under prolonged heat stress conditions suggests that redundant mechanisms activated in APX2-deficient plants during heat stress play a key role in the protection of reproductive tissues from heat-related damage. This finding is very important because heat-associated damage to reproductive tissues in different crops is a major cause for yield loss in agriculture production worldwide.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-263
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Experimental Botany
Volume64
Issue number1
Early online date26 Nov 2012
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (IBN-0420033, NSF-0431327, IOS-0639964, and IOS-0743954), University of North Texas College of Arts and Sciences, and University of Nevada at Reno College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources.

Keywords

  • Abiotic stress
  • ascorbate peroxidase
  • cytosol
  • heat stress
  • hydrogen peroxide
  • reactive oxygen species

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