Identification of rice Di19 family reveals OsDi19-4 involved in drought resistance

Lili Wang, Changchun Yu, Cong Chen, Chunlan He, Yingguo Zhu, Wenchao Huang
Plant Cell Reports 2014, 33 (12): 2047-62
The OsDi19 proteins functioned as transcription factors and played crucial roles in response to abiotic stress. Overexpression of OsDi19-4 in rice increased drought tolerance by enhancing ROS-scavenging activity. Many transcription factors play crucial roles in plant responses to abiotic stress. Here, comprehensive sequence analysis suggested that the drought-induced 19 (Di19) gene family in rice genome contain seven members, and these proteins contained a well-conserved zinc-finger Di19 domain. Most OsDi19 proteins were mainly targeted to the nucleus and have transactivation activity in yeast. Yeast two-hybrid and bimolecular fluorescence complementation assays showed that most OsDi19 proteins could form protein dimers. Expression analysis demonstrated that the OsDi19 genes were differentially and abundantly expressed in vegetative tissues, but expressed little in reproductive tissues and some of the OsDi19 genes were markedly induced by abiotic stresses and hormones in qRT-PCR analysis and microarray data. Overexpression of one stress-responsive gene, OsDi19-4, in rice resulted in significantly increased tolerance to drought stress compared with the wild type plants. Moreover, obviously increased ROS-scavenging ability was detected in the OsDi19-4-overexpressing plants under normal and drought stress conditions. These results suggested that the increased stress tolerance of OsDi19-4-overexpressing plants may be attributable to the enhanced ROS-scavenging activity. Taken together, these studies provide a detailed overview of the rice Di19 gene family, and suggest that the OsDi19 family may play crucial roles in the plant response to abiotic stress.

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