Comparative physiological and proteomic analyses reveal different adaptive strategies by Cymbidium sinense and C. tracyanum to drought
A terrestrial orchid, Cymbidium sinense appears to utilizes “remedy strategy”, while an epiphytic orchid, C. tracyanum , employs a “precaution strategy” to drought stress based on morphological, physiological and proteomic analysis.
Drought condition influences plant growth and productivity. Although the mechanism by which plants adapt to this abiotic stress has been studied extensively, the water-adaptive strategies of epiphytes grown in water-limited habitats remain undefined. Here, root and leaf anatomies, dynamic changes in physiological and proteomic responses during periods of drought stress and recovery studied in an epiphytic orchid (Cymbidium tracyanum) and a terrestrial orchid (C. sinense) to investigate their strategies for coping with drought. Compared with C. sinense, C. tracyanum showed stronger drought-resistant adaptive characteristics to drought because its leaves had more negative water potential at turgor loss point and roots had higher proportion of velamen radicum thickness. Although both species demonstrated quick recovery of photosynthesis after stress treatment, they differed in physiological and proteomic responses. We detected and functionally characterized 103 differentially expressed proteins in C. sinense and 104 proteins in C. tracyanum. These proteins were mainly involved in carbon and energy metabolism, photosynthesis, and defense responses. The up-regulated expression of plastid fibrillin may have contributed to the marked accumulation of jasmonates only in stressed C. sinense, while ferredoxin-NADP reductase up-regulation was only found in C. tracyanum which possibly related to the stimulation of cyclic electron flow that is linked with photoprotection. These physiological and proteomic performances suggest distinct adaptive strategies to drought stress between C. sinense (remedy strategy) and C. tracyanum (precaution strategy). Our findings may help improve our understanding about the ecological adaptation of epiphytic orchids.
KeywordsDrought adaption Proteomic analysis Orchid Epiphyte Terrestrial species
Midday leaf water content
Maximum quantum yield of PSII after dark adaptation overnight
Maximum photo-oxidizable P700
Cyclic electron flow
This work is financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31370362, 31670342), and National Key Project of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China (2015BAD10B03).
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