A homolog of human ski-interacting protein in rice positively regulates cell viability and stress tolerance

Xin Hou, Kabin Xie, Jialing Yao, Zhuyun Qi, Lizhong Xiong
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2009 April 14, 106 (15): 6410-5
Abiotic stresses are major limiting factors for growth, development, and productivity of crop plants. Here, we report on OsSKIPa, a rice homolog of human Ski-interacting protein (SKIP) that can complement the lethal defect of the knockout mutant of SKIP homolog in yeast and positively modulate cell viability and stress tolerance of rice. Suppression of OsSKIPa in rice resulted in growth arrest and reduced cell viability. The expression OsSKIPa is induced by various abiotic stresses and phytohormone treatments. Transgenic rice overexpressing OsSKIPa exhibited significantly improved growth performance in the medium containing stress agents (abscisic acid, salt, or mannitol) and drought resistance at both the seedling and reproductive stages. The OsSKIPa-overexpressing rice showed significantly increased reactive oxygen species-scavenging ability and transcript levels of many stress-related genes, including SNAC1 and rice homologs of CBF2, PP2C, and RD22, under drought stress conditions. More than 30 OsSKIPa-interacting proteins were identified, but most of these proteins have no matches with the reported SKIP-interacting proteins in animals and yeast. Together, these data suggest that OsSKIPa has evolved a specific function in positive modulation of stress resistance through transcriptional regulation of diverse stress-related genes in rice.

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