Transcriptomic analysis of Eruca vesicaria subs. sativa lines with contrasting tolerance to polyethylene glycol-simulated drought stress

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Abstract

Background: Eruca vesicaria subsp. sativa is one of the Cruciferae species most tolerant to drought stress. In our previous study some extremely drought-tolerant/sensitive Eruca lines were obtained. However little is known about the mechanism for drought tolerance in Eruca. Methods: In this study two E. vesicaria subs. sativa lines with contrasting drought tolerance were treated with liquid MS/PEG solution. Total RNA was isolated from 7-day old whole seedlings and then applied to Illumina sequencing platform for high-throughput transcriptional sequencing. Results: KEGG pathway analysis indicated that differentially expressed genes (DEGs) involved in alpha-Linolenic acid metabolism, Tyrosine metabolism, Phenylalanine, Tyrosine and tryptophan biosynthesis, Galactose metabolism, Isoquinoline alkaloid biosynthesis, Tropane, Piperidine and pyridine alkaloid biosynthesis, Mineral absorption, were all up-regulated specifically in drought-tolerant (DT) Eruca line under drought stress, while DEGs involved in ribosome, ribosome biogenesis, Pyrimidine metabolism, RNA degradation, Glyoxylate and dicarboxylate metabolism, Aminoacyl-tRNA biosynthesis, Citrate cycle, Methane metabolism, Carbon fixation in photosynthetic organisms, were all down-regulated. 51 DEGs were found to be most significantly up-regulated (log2 ratio ≥ 8) specifically in the DT line under PEG treatment, including those for ethylene-responsive transcription factors, WRKY and bHLH transcription factors, calmodulin-binding transcription activator, cysteine-rich receptor-like protein kinase, mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase, WD repeat-containing protein, OPDA reductase, allene oxide cyclase, aquaporin, O-acyltransferase WSD1, C-5 sterol desaturase, sugar transporter ERD6-like 12, trehalose-phosphate phosphatase and galactinol synthase 4. Eight of these 51 DEGs wre enriched in 8 COG and 17 KEGG pathways. Conclusions: DEGs that were found to be most significantly up-regulated specifically in the DT line under PEG treatment, up-regulation of DEGs involved in Arginine and proline metabolism, alpha-linolenic acid metabolism and down-regulation of carbon fixation and protein synthesis might be critical for the drought tolerance in Eruca. These results will be valuable for revealing mechanism of drought tolerance in Eruca and also for genetic engineering to improve drought tolerance in crops.

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Huang, B. L., Li, X., Liu, P., Ma, L., Wu, W., Zhang, X., … Huang, B. (2019). Transcriptomic analysis of Eruca vesicaria subs. sativa lines with contrasting tolerance to polyethylene glycol-simulated drought stress. BMC Plant Biology, 19(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12870-019-1997-2

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