Plant Cell Reports

, Volume 35, Issue 9, pp 1827–1839 | Cite as

Genome-wide investigation of the NAC transcription factor family in melon (Cucumis melo L.) and their expression analysis under salt stress

  • Shiwei Wei
  • Liwei Gao
  • Yidong Zhang
  • Furong Zhang
  • Xiao Yang
  • Danfeng HuangEmail author
Original Article


Key message

82 melon NAC (CmNAC) genes were identified in melon. We putatively identified the function of CmNAC gene in melon under salt stress.


NAC transcription factor proteins play important roles in many biological processes, including plant development and stress responses. To date, few full-length melon NAC proteins have been identified. In this study, 82 melon NAC (CmNAC) genes were identified in the Cucumis melo L. genome. By interrogating our cDNA libraries and transcriptome data from melon under salt stress, and comparison of their phylogenetic relationship with Arabidopsis NAC salt stress-related genes, we putatively identified that the fourth clade of CmNAC genes were involved in the salt stress response, especially the second clade of the group IV of the phylogenetic tree. Expression analysis confirmed that eleven of the twelve CmNAC genes from the group IV were induced in melon seedling roots by salt stress; the other gene was down regulated by salt stress. The expression of CmNAC14 continually increased in 12 h under salt stress, and was selected for transformation into Arabidopsis for functional verification. Overexpression of CmNAC14 increased the sensitivity of transgenic Arabidopsis lines to salt stress, which were simultaneously demonstrated by reduced expression of abiotic stress-response genes and variation in several physiological indices. This study increases our knowledge and may enable further characterization of the roles of CmNAC family in the response to salt stress.


Bioinformatic analysis Functional characterization Melon NAC Salt stress 



Transcription factors


Plant transcription factor database


Suppression subtractive hybridization


Quantitative real-time PCR


Electrolyte leakage





We would like to express our gratitude to Dr Doudou Guo for useful imaging technology support and Dr Lida Zhang for bioinformatic analysis of CmNACs. This work was supported by Grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31372079), the Natural Science Foundation of Shanghai Science and Technology Committee (13ZR1422400), The construction of industrial technology system in watermelon and melon in Shanghai. 

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that no conflicts of interest exist.

Supplementary material

299_2016_1997_MOESM1_ESM.docx (183 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 183 kb)
299_2016_1997_MOESM2_ESM.doc (5.8 mb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOC 5924 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shiwei Wei
    • 1
    • 2
  • Liwei Gao
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yidong Zhang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Furong Zhang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiao Yang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Danfeng Huang
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Plant ScienceSchool of Agriculture and Biology, Shanghai Jiao Tong UniversityShanghaiChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Urban Agriculture (South)Ministry of AgricultureShanghaiChina

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