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Cotton ACAULIS5 is involved in stem elongation and the plant defense response to Verticillium dahliae through thermospermine alteration

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Abstract

Key message

Overexpression of GhACL5 , an ACAULIS5 from cotton, in Arabidopsis increased plant height and T-Spm level. Silencing of GhACL5 in cotton exhibited a dwarf phenotype and reduced resistance to Verticillium dahliae.

Abstract

The Arabidopsis thaliana gene ACAULIS5 (ACL5), for which inactivation causes a defect in stem elongation, encodes thermospermine (T-Spm) synthase. However, limited information is available about improvement in plant height by the overexpression of ACL5 gene, and the biological functions of ACL5 genes in response to biotic stress. Here, this study reports that constitutive expression of the cotton ACL5 gene (GhACL5) in Arabidopsis thaliana significantly increased plant height and elevated the level of T-Spm. Silencing of that gene in cotton reduced the amount of T-Spm and led to a severe dwarf phenotype. Expression of GhACL5 was induced upon treatment with the fungal pathogen Verticillium dahliae and plant hormones salicylic acid, jasmonic acid, and ethylene in resistant cotton plants, but gene silencing in cotton enhanced their susceptibility to V. dahliae infection. Furthermore, T-Spm exposure effectively inhibited V. dahliae growth in vitro. In summary, GhACL5 expression is related to in planta levels of T-Spm and is involved in stem elongation and defense responses against V. dahliae.

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Abbreviations

ACL5 :

ACAULIS5

Arg:

Arginine

ET:

Ethephon solution

GA:

Gibberellic acid

hpi:

Hours post-inoculation

HPLC:

High-performance liquid chromatography

JA:

Jasmonic acid

Orn:

Ornithine

PAs:

Polyamines

Put:

Putrescine

SA:

Salicylic acid

SAM:

S-Adenosylmethionine

SAMDC:

S-Adenosylmethionine decarboxylase

Spd:

Spermidine

Spm:

Spermine

SPMS:

Spm synthase

SSH:

Suppression subtractive hybridization

TRV:

Tobacco rattle virus

T-Spm:

Thermospermine

V. dahliae :

Verticillium dahliae

VIGS:

Virus-induced gene silencing

WT:

Wild-type

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Acknowledgments

This work was supported by the 863 Project of China (No. 2013AA102601-5) and the Science & Technology Pillar Program of Hebei Province (14226308D). We are grateful to Priscilla Licht for critical reading of the manuscript. We thank Yule Liu of Tsinghua University for kindly offering the TRV vector, and Sun Yan-xiang of Langfang Normal University for kindly offering the pGN vector.

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Correspondence to Zhiying Ma.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Communicated by P. Lakshmanan.

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Mo, H., Wang, X., Zhang, Y. et al. Cotton ACAULIS5 is involved in stem elongation and the plant defense response to Verticillium dahliae through thermospermine alteration. Plant Cell Rep 34, 1975–1985 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00299-015-1844-3

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00299-015-1844-3

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