Plant Molecular Biology Reporter

, Volume 32, Issue 2, pp 303–317

Critical cis-Acting Elements and Interacting Transcription Factors: Key Players Associated with Abiotic Stress Responses in Plants

Review

DOI: 10.1007/s11105-013-0667-z

Cite this article as:
Liu, JH., Peng, T. & Dai, W. Plant Mol Biol Rep (2014) 32: 303. doi:10.1007/s11105-013-0667-z
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Abstract

Plants are constantly confronted with various abiotic stresses, such as drought, extreme temperature, salinity, nutrient element deficiency and heavy metal contamination. In the long process of evolution, plants have developed a suite of sophisticated strategies to adapt to and to survive under the harsh environmental cues, among which transcriptional alteration constitutes an overriding mechanism. Stress-responsive genes can be classified into two major groups, functional genes and regulatory genes. Transcription factors play an essential role in the abiotic stress response by regulating the mRNA abundance of a large spectrum of downstream target genes via interaction with the cis-acting elements on the promoters of the genes. So far, several families of TFs and their interacting cis-acting elements, collectively called as regulons, have been well characterized to be key players closely implicated in abiotic stress responses. In the current overview, the major TFs and the cis-acting elements that have been extensively investigated in the last decades are introduced. In addition, future perspectives pertinent to their research directions are proposed, with the intention of gaining insight into better understanding and desirable application of the transcription factors.

Keywords

Abiotic stresscis-acting elementsTranscription factorsGenetic improvements

Abbreviations

ABRE

ABA responsive element

ABF

ABRE-binding factor

AREB

ABRE-binding protein

bHLH

Basic helix-loop-helix

CBF

C-repeat binding factor

CRT

C-repeat

DRE

Dehydration responsive element

DREB

DRE binding protein

ICE1

Inducer of CBF expression 1

MYB

Myeloblastosis

NAC

NAM, ATAF1-2, CUC2

TF

Transcription factor

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Horticultural Plant Biology, MOE, College of Horticulture and Forestry SciencesHuazhong Agricultural UniversityWuhanChina