Plant Molecular Biology

, Volume 99, Issue 6, pp 517–534 | Cite as

The Arabidopsis thaliana transcription factor MYB59 regulates calcium signalling during plant growth and stress response

  • Elisa Fasani
  • Giovanni DalCorso
  • Alex Costa
  • Sara Zenoni
  • Antonella FuriniEmail author


Key message

Transcription factor MYB59 is involved in plant growth and stress responses by acting as negative regulator of Ca signalling and homeostasis.


The Arabidopsis thaliana transcription factor MYB59 is induced by cadmium (Cd) and plays a key role in the regulation of cell cycle progression and root elongation, but its mechanism of action is poorly understood. We investigated the expression of MYB59 and differences between wild-type plants, the myb59 mutant and MYB59-overexpressing lines (obtained by transformation in the mutant genotype) during plant growth and in response to various forms of stress. We also compared the transcriptomes of wild-type and myb59 mutant plants to determine putative MYB59 targets. The myb59 mutant has longer roots, smaller leaves and smaller cells than wild-type plants and responds differently to stress in germination assay. Transcriptomic analysis revealed the upregulation in the myb59 mutant of multiple genes involved in calcium (Ca) homeostasis and signalling, including those encoding calmodulin-like proteins and Ca transporters. Notably, MYB59 was strongly induced by Ca deficiency, and the myb59 mutant was characterized by higher levels of cytosolic Ca in root cells and showed a modest alteration of Ca transient frequency in guard cells, associated with the absence of Ca-induced stomatal closure. These results indicate that MYB59 negatively regulates Ca homeostasis and signalling during Ca deficiency, thus controlling plant growth and stress responses.


Arabidopsis thaliana Ca signalling and homeostasis Plant growth MYB transcription factor Stomata Stress response 



The authors are grateful to Dr. Gaétan Glauser of the Neuchâtel Platform of Analytical Chemistry (NPAC, Université de Neuchâtel, Switzerland) for the measurement of IAA content and to Dr. Maria Teresa Scupoli and Dr. Chiara Cavallini of the University Laboratory for Medical Research (LURM, University of Verona, Italy) for the flow cytometry analysis.

Author contributions

EF performed most of the experiments and wrote the article with contribution of AF and GD, AC designed and helped with the Cameleon experiments and provided assistance in understanding the resulting data. SZ provided assistance in microarray analysis and interpretation. AF and GD conceived the project and supervised the experiments. EF and GD equally contributed to this work.


Funding for E.F.’s PhD and research grant were from Italian Ministry of University and Research (MIUR).

Supplementary material

11103_2019_833_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (272 kb)
Online Resource 1 Semi-quantitative analysis of the expression of the three MYB59 isoforms by real-time RT-PCR under control conditions, Cd treatment, drought, ABA and salt stress. Supplementary material 1 (PDF 272 KB)
11103_2019_833_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (143 kb)
Online Resource 2 Comparison of MYB59 expression in wild-type, myb59 mutant and MYB59- overexpressing lines. Supplementary material 2 (PDF 143 KB)
11103_2019_833_MOESM3_ESM.pdf (146 kb)
Online Resource 3 Distribution of diameter of the protoplast from leaf 4 and 11 of four-week-old plants in wild-type, myb59 mutant and MYB59-overexpressing plants. Supplementary material 3 (PDF 146 KB)
11103_2019_833_MOESM4_ESM.pdf (250 kb)
Online Resource 4 Stress tolerance in wild-type, myb59 mutant and MYB59-overexpressing plants. Supplementary material 4 (PDF 250 KB)
11103_2019_833_MOESM5_ESM.pdf (159 kb)
Online Resource 5 Expression of MYB59 isoforms after 6 and 24 hours and 4 days under low-Ca treatment. Supplementary material 5 (PDF 158 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiotechnologyUniversity of VeronaVeronaItaly
  2. 2.Department of Life SciencesUniversity of MilanoMilanItaly

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