Genome-wide identification of the Jatropha curcas MYB family and functional analysis of the abiotic stress responsive gene JcMYB2

Xianjun Peng, Hui Liu, Dan Wang, Shihua Shen
BMC Genomics 2016 March 22, 17: 251

BACKGROUND: The MYB family is one of the most abundant transcription factor families in plants. MYB proteins are involved in plant development, abiotic stress tolerance, hormone signal transduction and disease resistance. Here we perform genome-wide identification of MYB family transcription factors in an energy plant J. curcas, including determining family composition, phylogenetic evolution and functional prediction analysis. In addition, we further elucidate the function of the JcMYB2 gene.

METHODS: The phylogenetic trees were constructed by using the neighbor-joining method in MEGA 5.2. The biological functions of some JcMYBs were predicted according to orthology. The full length cDNA of JcMYB2 was cloned by using the RACE method. GUS histochemical staining was used to test the activity of the JcMYB2 promoter. Expression patterns of JcMYB2 were detected by using qPCR Transcriptional activity JcMYB2 were confirmed through yeast one hybrid. Subcellular Localization of JcMYB2 Protein were demonstrated by transient expression in the tobacco leaf. The function of JcMYB2 in salt and freezing tolerance were detected in transgenic plants.

RESULTS: A genome-wide analysis identified 128 MYB genes, including 123 R2R3-MYBs, 4 R1R2R3-MYBs and 1 4R-MYB. All of the R2R3-MYBs are further classified into 19 groups which indicated functional conservation among previously identified groups of R2R3-MYB proteins. Among of these newly identified MYBs, the JcMYB2 belongs to group G11 and its expression is induced obviously by cold, salt and MeJA (Methyl Jasmonate) and slightly by ABA (abscisic acid). JcMYB2 is localized to the nucleus and has transcriptional activity. JcMYB2 overexpressing plants are more tolerant to salt and cold stress than wild type plants. Tissue specific expression profiles showed that the JcMYB2 gene was expressed ubiquitously throughout the plant, with higher expression levels observed in the root.

CONCLUSION: A comprehensive genome-wide analysis and phylogenetic relationship of R2R3-MYB subfamily in J. curcas present the global identification and functional prediction of JcR2R3-MYBs. Additionally, JcMYB2 regulates the stress response signaling networks by interacting with MeJA and ABA signaling pathway and functions in the root development of J. curcas.

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