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The temporal foliar transcriptome of the perennial C<inf>3</inf> desert plant Rhazya stricta in its natural environment

Yates, SA and Chernukhin, I and Alvarez-Fernandez, R and Bechtold, U and Baeshen, M and Baeshen, N and Mutwakil, MZ and Sabir, J and Lawson, T and Mullineaux, PM (2014) 'The temporal foliar transcriptome of the perennial C<inf>3</inf> desert plant Rhazya stricta in its natural environment.' BMC Plant Biology, 14 (1). ISSN 1471-2229

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Abstract

Background: The perennial species Rhazya stricta (R. stricta) grows in arid zones and carries out typical C3 photosynthesis under daily extremes of heat, light intensity and low humidity. In order to identify processes attributable to its adaptation to this harsh environment, we profiled the foliar transcriptome of apical and mature leaves harvested from the field at three time periods of the same day.Results: Next generation sequencing was used to reconstruct the transcriptome and quantify gene expression. 28018 full length transcript sequences were recovered and 45.4% were differentially expressed (DE) throughout the day. We compared our dataset with microarray experiments in Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) and other desert species to identify trends in circadian and stress response profiles between species. 34% of the DE genes were homologous to Arabidopsis circadian-regulated genes. Independent of circadian control, significant overlaps with Arabidopsis genes were observed only with heat and salinity/high light stress-responsive genes. Also, groups of DE genes common to other desert plants species were identified. We identified protein families specific to R. stricta which were found to have diverged from their homologs in other species and which were over -expressed at midday.Conclusions: This study shows that temporal profiling is essential to assess the significance of genes apparently responsive to abiotic stress. This revealed that in R. stricta, the circadian clock is a major regulator of DE genes, even of those annotated as stress-responsive in other species. This may be an important feature of the adaptation of R. stricta to its extreme but predictable environment. However, the majority of DE genes were not circadian-regulated. Of these, some were common to other desert species and others were distinct to R. stricta, suggesting that they are important for the adaptation of such plants to arid environments. © 2014 Yates et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Biological Sciences, School of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2014 15:25
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2019 16:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/9699

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