TaCHP: a wheat zinc finger protein gene down-regulated by abscisic acid and salinity stress plays a positive role in stress tolerance

Cuiling Li, Jian Lv, Xin Zhao, Xinghui Ai, Xinlei Zhu, Mengcheng Wang, Shuangyi Zhao, Guangmin Xia
Plant Physiology 2010, 154 (1): 211-21
The plant response to abiotic stresses involves both abscisic acid (ABA)-dependent and ABA-independent signaling pathways. Here we describe TaCHP, a CHP-rich (for cysteine, histidine, and proline rich) zinc finger protein family gene extracted from bread wheat (Triticum aestivum), is differentially expressed during abiotic stress between the salinity-sensitive cultivar Jinan 177 and its tolerant somatic hybrid introgression cultivar Shanrong No.3. TaCHP expressed in the roots of seedlings at the three-leaf stage, and the transcript localized within the cells of the root tip cortex and meristem. TaCHP transcript abundance was higher in Shanrong No.3 than in Jinan 177, but was reduced by the imposition of salinity or drought stress, as well as by the exogenous supply of ABA. When JN17, a salinity hypersensitive wheat cultivar, was engineered to overexpress TaCHP, its performance in the face of salinity stress was improved, and the ectopic expression of TaCHP in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) also improved the ability of salt tolerance. The expression level of a number of stress reporter genes (AtCBF3, AtDREB2A, AtABI2, and AtABI1) was raised in the transgenic lines in the presence of salinity stress, while that of AtMYB15, AtABA2, and AtAAO3 was reduced in its absence. The presence in the upstream region of the TaCHP open reading frame of the cis-elements ABRE, MYBRS, and MYCRS suggests that it is a component of the ABA-dependent and -independent signaling pathways involved in the plant response to abiotic stress. We suggest that TaCHP enhances stress tolerance via the promotion of CBF3 and DREB2A expression.

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