Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture (PCTOC)

, Volume 118, Issue 3, pp 431–444 | Cite as

Cloning and characterisation of a pepper aquaporin, CaAQP, which reduces chilling stress in transgenic tobacco plants

  • Yan-Xu Yin
  • Wei-Li Guo
  • Ying-Li Zhang
  • Jiao-Jiao Ji
  • Huai-Juan Xiao
  • Fei Yan
  • Yan-Yan Zhao
  • Wen-Chao Zhu
  • Ru-Gang Chen
  • Wei-Guo Chai
  • Zhen-Hui Gong
Original Paper

Abstract

Ubiquitous cell membrane proteins called aquaporins are members of major intrinsic proteins (MIPs), which control the specific transport of water molecules across cell membranes. A pepper aquaporin gene (CaAQP), which exhibits the structural features of tonoplast intrinsic proteins of the MIP subfamily, was isolated from the leaves of chilling-treated seedlings of pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) cv. P70. Assays indicated high levels of expression in young seeds, green fruits and flower buds and low levels of expression in the stems, leaves and roots of pepper. The expression patterns were strongly and rapidly induced by HgCl2, low temperature, abscisic acid, fluridone and osmotic stresses. The responsiveness of pepper seedlings pretreated with abscisic acid at low temperatures demonstrated up-regulation of CaAQP by chilling, which is potentially involved in ABA signalling. Our results indicated that overexpression of CaAQP decreased chilling stress in transgenic plants, likely by increasing the stomatal aperture under stress, increasing the rate of membrane damage during the recovery stage, thereby affecting the intercellular CO2 concentration with lower stomatal conductance and transpiration rates. VIGS of CaAQP in pepper plants caused significant growth retardation. These results suggested that CaAQP played a crucial role in the plant response to abiotic stresses.

Keywords

Abiotic stresses CaAQP Capsicum annuum L. Tonoplast intrinsic protein Transgenic tobacco 

Abbreviations

CaMV

Cauliflower mosaic virus

Ci

Intercellular CO2 concentrations

GIPs

GlpF-like intrinsic proteins

Gs

Stomatal conductance

HIPs

Hybrid intrinsic proteins

L0

Root hydraulic conductance

MIPs

Major intrinsic proteins

NIPs

Nodulin26-like intrinsic proteins

NtL25

L25 ribosomal protein

PIPs

Plasma membrane intrinsic proteins

Pn

Net photosynthetic rate

PSV

Protein storage vacuoles

RACE

Rapid amplification of cDNA ends

RCBD

Randomized complete block design

REL

Relative electrolyte leakage

RWC

Relative water content

SA

Salicylic acid

SIPs

Small basic intrinsic proteins

SE

Standard error

TDFs

Transcript-derived fragments

TIPs

Tonoplast intrinsic proteins

Tr

Transpiration rate

TMHs

Transmembrane helices

UTR

Non-coding region

XIPs

Uncharacterized X intrinsic proteins

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 31201615, 31272163), “The Twelfth Five-Year” Plan of National Science and Technology in Rural Areas (No. 2011BAD12B03) and the Shaanxi Provincial Science and Technology Coordinating Innovative Engineering Project (No. 2012KTCL02-09). Language help was provided by Elsevier Webshop language services.

Supplementary material

11240_2014_495_MOESM1_ESM.doc (399 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 399 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yan-Xu Yin
    • 1
  • Wei-Li Guo
    • 1
  • Ying-Li Zhang
    • 1
  • Jiao-Jiao Ji
    • 1
  • Huai-Juan Xiao
    • 1
  • Fei Yan
    • 1
  • Yan-Yan Zhao
    • 1
  • Wen-Chao Zhu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ru-Gang Chen
    • 1
  • Wei-Guo Chai
    • 3
  • Zhen-Hui Gong
    • 1
  1. 1.College of HorticultureNorthwest A&F UniversityYanglingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Guizhou Academy of Agricultural SciencesGuiyangPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Institute of VegetablesHangzhou Academy of Agricultural SciencesHangzhouPeople’s Republic of China

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