Author(s): Thomas JC, McElwain EF, Bohnert HJ, Thomas JC, McElwain EF, Bohnert HJ
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Abstract In Mesembryanthemum crystallinum, salt stress induces the accumulation of proline and a specific isoform of the enzyme phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase (PEPCase) prior to the switch from C(3) to Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM). To determine whether plant growth regulators initiate or imitate these responses, we have compared the effects elicited by NaCl, abscisic acid (ABA), and cytokinins using PEPCase and proline levels as diagnostic tools. Exogenously applied ABA is a poor substitute for NaCl in inducing proline and CAM-specific PEPCase accumulation. Even though ABA levels increase 8- to 10-fold in leaves during salt stress, inhibition of ABA accumulation does not affect these salt-induced responses. In contrast, the addition of cytokinins (6-benzylaminopurine, zeatin, 2-isopentyladenine) mimic salt by greatly increasing proline and PEPCase amounts. Endogenous zeatin levels remain unchanged during salt stress. We conclude: (a) The salt-induced accumulation of proline and PEPCase is coincident with, but is not attributable to, the rise in ABA or zeatin concentration. (b) For the first time, cytokinins and NaCl are implicated as independent initiators of a sensing pathway that signals leaves to alter PEPCase gene expression. (c) During stress, the sensing of osmotic imbalances leading to ABA, proline, and CAM-specific PEPCase accumulation may be mediated directly by NaCl.
This article was published in Plant Physiol
and referenced in Journal of Microbial & Biochemical Technology