The Salt-Stress Response of the Transgenic Plum Line J8-1 and Its Interaction with the Salicylic Acid Biosynthetic Pathway from Mandelonitrile


Salinity is considered as one of the most important abiotic challenges that affect crop productivity. Plant hormones, including salicylic acid (SA), are key factors in the defence signalling output triggered during plant responses against environmental stresses. We have previously reported in peach a new SA biosynthetic pathway from mandelonitrile (MD), the molecule at the hub of the cyanogenic glucoside turnover in Prunus sp. In this work, we have studied whether this new SA biosynthetic pathway is also present in plum and the possible role this pathway plays in plant plasticity under salinity, focusing on the transgenic plum line J8-1, which displays stress tolerance via an enhanced antioxidant capacity. The SA biosynthesis from MD in non-transgenic and J8-1 micropropagated plum shoots was studied by metabolomics. Then the response of J8-1 to salt stress in presence of MD or Phe (MD precursor) was assayed by measuring: chlorophyll content and fluorescence parameters, stress related hormones, levels of non-enzymatic antioxidants, the expression of two genes coding redox-related proteins, and the content of soluble nutrients. The results from in vitro assays suggest that the SA synthesis from the MD pathway demonstrated in peach is not clearly present in plum, at least under the tested conditions. Nevertheless, in J8-1 NaCl-stressed seedlings, an increase in SA was recorded as a result of the MD treatment, suggesting that MD could be involved in the SA biosynthesis under NaCl stress conditions in plum plants. We have also shown that the plum line J8-1 was tolerant to NaCl under greenhouse conditions, and this response was quite similar in MD-treated plants. Nevertheless, the MD treatment produced an increase in SA, jasmonic acid (JA) and reduced ascorbate (ASC) contents, as well as in the coefficient of non-photochemical quenching (qN) and the gene expression of Non-Expressor of Pathogenesis-Related 1 (NPR1) and thioredoxin H (TrxH) under salinity conditions. This response suggested a crosstalk between different signalling pathways (NPR1/Trx and SA/JA) leading to salinity tolerance in the transgenic plum line

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This paper was published in IRTA Pubpro.

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