A B-box zinc finger protein, MdBBX10, enhanced salt and drought stresses tolerance in Arabidopsis

  • Xin Liu
  • Rong Li
  • Yaqing Dai
  • Li Yuan
  • Qinghua Sun
  • Shizhong ZhangEmail author
  • Xiaoyun WangEmail author


Key message

The expression of MdBBX10 was significantly induced by different stresses and ABA treatments. Overexpression of MdBBX10 in Arabidopsis significantly enhanced abiotic stresses tolerance by ABA signalling.


The roles of B-box domain(s) containing proteins (BBXs) in regulation of flowering and light morphogenesis of plants were intensively studied. However, the roles of plant BBXs in abiotic stresses are poorly understood. A B-box protein encoding gene from apple (MdBBX10) was found to be up-regulated from gene expression profile under salt stress. qRT-PCR analysis indicated that the expression of MdBBX10 was significantly induced by different stresses and exogenous abscisic acid (ABA) in apple roots and leaves. The β-glucuronidase activity driven by the promoter of MdBBX10 was also strongly induced by NaCl, H2O2, polyethylene glycol and exogenous ABA, which was consistent to the existence of rich cis-acting elements related to the abiotic stresses in the promoter sequence. Over-expression of MdBBX10 in Arabidopsis significantly enhanced tolerance to abiotic stresses, with higher germination ratio and longer length of roots than the wild type plants. Transgenic plants of over-expressing MdBBX10 lines were more sensitive to exogenous ABA than the wild type plants. Under abiotic stress treatments, the transcript levels of ABA- and stress-related genes were higher in MdBBX10-overexpressing plants than wild type plants. Over-expression of MdBBX10 could enhance plant’s ability to scavenge reactive oxygen species (ROS) under stresses, which is correlated with the expression of ROS-scavenging genes. These results provided the evidences that MdBBX10 plays an important role in enhanced plant tolerance to abiotic stresses, which were involved in ABA-mediated response and ROS response.


B-box protein Stress tolerance ABA signaling Abiotic stresses 



This work was supported by Special Research Fund of Public Welfare of China Agricultural Ministry (201303093).

Author Contributions

Designed the experiments: XYW, SZZ and XL. Performed the experiments: XL, RL, and YQD. Analyzed the data: XL, RL, QHS and LY. Wrote the paper: XYW, SZZ and XL. All authors read and approved the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11103_2019_828_MOESM1_ESM.doc (86 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 86 KB)
11103_2019_828_MOESM2_ESM.docx (18 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOCX 17 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Crop Biology, College of Life ScienceShandong Agricultural UniversityTaianPeople’s Republic of China

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