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Strigolactones Stimulate High Light Stress Adaptation by Modulating Photosynthesis Rate in Arabidopsis


Strigolactones (SLs), a class of carotenoid-derived phytohormones, were originally discovered as rhizosphere signaling molecules. They stimulate parasitic plant seed germination and can establish a symbiotic relationship between plants and beneficial microbes. In addition to their plant developmental role, evidence for their role in various stress responses such as salt and drought stresses was reported recently. In the present study, we tried to understand the unique metabolic pathways that were regulated by SLs in comparison with other plant hormones. We identified that SLs were predominantly modulating photosynthetic pathways in comparison with other plant hormones. Further, we observed that SLs positively influence high light tolerance, and this process is dependent on SL-mediated photosynthesis rate regulation. In addition, the dynamic changes of the metabolites involved in glycolysis and tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle upon external application of SL analogue suggest the stress adaptation landscape of plants. Our study presents the dynamic and specific effect of SLs in high light-driven stress adaptation through photosynthesis in plants.

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Data Availability

The raw data files of the transcriptome data are available in Array Express, EBI, under the accession number E-MTAB-11329. All the other data used in the analysis were provided in the supplementary information.


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We thank Prof. Jiří Friml and Ms Michelle Gallei for helpful discussion. This project received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions and is co-financed by the South Moravian Region under grant agreement No. 665860 (Si. Si). Additional funding was obtained as Start-up Research Grant (SRG/2021/001707) from DST-SERB, Government of India (Si. Si). The project was funded by The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports/MEYS of the Czech Republic under the project CEITEC 2020 (LQ1601) (TN, TRM). PK was supported by the European Regional Development Fund, the Project Phytophthora Research Center Reg. No. CZ.02.1.01/0.0/0.0/15_003/0000453. KBM thanks support from the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of CR project “SustES—Adaptation strategies for sustainable ecosystem services and food security under adverse environmental conditions” (CZ.02.1.01/0.0/0.0/16_019/0000797). Access to computing and storage facilities owned by parties and projects contributing to the national grid infrastructure, MetaCentrum, provided under the program “Projects of Large Infrastructure for Research, Development, and Innovations” (LM2010005) is greatly appreciated. This article reflects only the authors’ views, and the EU is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

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ST, TRM, and SS contributed to conceptualization and data curation; ST and TRM contributed to formal analysis and methodology; SS and TN contributed to funding acquisition; SS contributed to supervision; ST, TRM, PK, MB, KBH, VB, and HS contributed to investigation; ST, TRM, SS, PK, MB, KBH, TN, and SS contributed to writing—review and editing. All authors have read and agreed to the published version of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Sibu Simon.

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Thula, S., Moturu, T.R., Salava, H. et al. Strigolactones Stimulate High Light Stress Adaptation by Modulating Photosynthesis Rate in Arabidopsis. J Plant Growth Regul 42, 4818–4833 (2023).

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