Planta

, Volume 228, Issue 1, pp 89–97

Acetylsalicylic acid induces programmed cell death in Arabidopsis cell cultures

  • José M. García-Heredia
  • Manuel Hervás
  • Miguel A. De la Rosa
  • José A. Navarro
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00425-008-0721-5

Cite this article as:
García-Heredia, J.M., Hervás, M., De la Rosa, M.A. et al. Planta (2008) 228: 89. doi:10.1007/s00425-008-0721-5

Abstract

Acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), a derivative from the plant hormone salicylic acid (SA), is a commonly used drug that has a dual role in animal organisms as an anti-inflammatory and anticancer agent. It acts as an inhibitor of cyclooxygenases (COXs), which catalyze prostaglandins production. It is known that ASA serves as an apoptotic agent on cancer cells through the inhibition of the COX-2 enzyme. Here, we provide evidences that ASA also behaves as an agent inducing programmed cell death (PCD) in cell cultures of the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, in a similar way than the well-established PCD-inducing agent H2O2, although the induction of PCD by ASA requires much lower inducer concentrations. Moreover, ASA is herein shown to be a more efficient PCD-inducing agent than salicylic acid. ASA treatment of Arabidopsis cells induces typical PCD-linked morphological and biochemical changes, namely cell shrinkage, nuclear DNA degradation, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, cytochrome c release from mitochondria and induction of caspase-like activity. However, the ASA effect can be partially reverted by jasmonic acid. Taking together, these results reveal the existence of common features in ASA-induced animal apoptosis and plant PCD, and also suggest that there are similarities between the pathways of synthesis and function of prostanoid-like lipid mediators in animal and plant organisms.

Keywords

Acetylsalicylic acidApoptosisArabidopsisJasmonic acidProgrammed cell death

Abbreviations

Ac-DEVD-AMC

N-acetyl-Asp-Glu-Val-Asp-AMC (7-amino-4-methylcoumarin)

Ac-DEVD-CHO

N-acetyl-Asp-Glu-Val-Asp-CHO (aldehyde)

AOS

Allene oxide synthase

ASA

Acetylsalicylic acid

COX

Cyclooxygenase

DAPI

4′,6-Diamidino-2-phenylindole

JA

Jasmonic acid

MDH

Malate dehydrogenase

PCD

Programmed cell death

SA

Salicylic acid

TUNEL

Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labelling

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • José M. García-Heredia
    • 1
  • Manuel Hervás
    • 1
  • Miguel A. De la Rosa
    • 1
  • José A. Navarro
    • 1
  1. 1.Instituto de Bioquímica Vegetal y FotosíntesisUniversidad de Sevilla & Consejo Superior de Investigaciones CientíficasSevillaSpain