Proteomics Analysis of Drought Stress-Responsive Proteins inHippophae rhamnoidesL.

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Hippophae rhamnoides L. is uniquely capable of growing well under extreme environmental conditions such as water deficit, low temperature, and high altitude. Such tolerance invokes much interest in understanding the biology of this plant species and its utilization potential. In this study, analysis of drought stress-responsive proteins in H. rhamnoides was conducted wherein greenhouse-grown seedlings were subjected to drought stress. By using proteomic techniques, proteins, extracted from leaves, were analyzed using two-dimensional electrophoresis and MALDI-TOF MS. Altogether, 55 proteins exhibited changes in abundance under stress. Of these, 13 proteins were identified, including three that disappeared under drought (a putative ABC transporter ATP-binging protein, a heat shock protein HslU, and a hypothetical protein XP-515578), seven that were up-regulated (three large subunits of rubisco, a hypothetical protein DSM3645-23351, a putative acyl-CoA dehydrogenase, a nesprin-2, and a J-type co-chaperone HSC20), and three that were only detected under drought (a probable nitrogen regulation protein (NtrX), a 4-hydroxyphenylpyruvate dioxygenase, and an unnamed protein product). These proteins may function in β-oxidation pathways in mitochondria, across membranes transport, abnormal protein removal, or prevent protein aggregation arrest, cell division, cytoskeleton stabilization, iron-sulfur cluster assembly, nitrogen metabolism regulation, and antioxidant substance biosynthesis. Four proteins (J-type co-chaperone Hsc20, a putative ABC transporter ATP-binging protein, NtrX, and HslU) were deemed as new discoveries in higher plants, and their functions were predicted either from their conserved domains or homologies to other organisms. These results provide new insights into our understanding of the mechanism of drought tolerance in plants.

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