AbstractBackground and Aims
Multiple copies of genes encoding the catalytic subunit (c) of protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) are commonly found in plants. For some of these genes, expression is up-regulated under water stress. The aim of this study was to investigate expression and characterization of TaPP2Ac-1 from Triticum aestivum, and to evaluate the effects of TaPP2Ac-1 on Nicotiana benthamiana in response to water stress.Methods TaPP2Ac-1
cDNA was isolated from wheat by in silico identification and RT-PCR amplification. Transcript levels of TaPP2Ac-1 were examined in wheat responding to water deficit. Copy numbers of TaPP2Ac-1 in wheat genomes and subcellular localization in onion epidermal cells were studied. Enzyme properties of the recombinant TaPP2Ac-1 protein were determined. In addition, studies were carried out in tobacco plants with pCAPE2-TaPP2Ac-1 under water-deficit conditions.Key Results TaPP2Ac-1
cDNA was cloned from wheat. Transcript levels of TaPP2Ac-1 in wheat seedlings were up-regulated under drought condition. One copy for this TaPP2Ac-1 was present in each of the three wheat genomes. TaPP2Ac-1 fused with GFP was located in the nucleus and cytoplasm of onion epidermis cells. The recombinant TaPP2Ac-1 gene was over-expressed in Escherichia coli and encoded a functional serine/threonine phosphatase. Transgenic tobacco plants over-expressing TaPP2Ac-1 exhibited stronger drought tolerance than non-transgenic tobacco plants.Conclusions
Tobacco plants with pCAPE2-TaPP2Ac-1 appeared to be resistant to water deficit, as shown by their higher capacity to maintain leaf relative water content, leaf cell-membrane stability index, water-retention ability and water use efficiency under water stress. The results suggest that the physiological role of TaPP2Ac-1 is related to drought stress response, possibly through its involvement in drought-responding signal transduction pathways.