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Overexpression of KcNHX1 gene confers tolerance to multiple abiotic stresses in Arabidopsis thaliana


Abiotic stresses such as drought, salinity, and heat affect plant growth and development. Karelinia caspica is a unique perennial herb that grows in desert area for a long time and has strong tolerance to environmental stresses. In order to explore the functions of the Na+/H+ antiporter gene from eremophyte K. caspica (KcNHX1) in the abiotic stress response of K. caspica and the underlying regulatory mechanisms, we constructed a vector overexpressing KcNHX1 and transformed it into Arabidopsis thaliana. The physiological results showed that the overexpression of KcNHX1 in A. thaliana not only enhanced the plant's tolerance to salt stress, but also enhanced its tolerance to drought and heat stress at the seedling stage. In addition, KcNHX1-overexpressing plants exhibited enhanced reproductive growth under high temperature, which was mediated by increased auxin accumulation. Taken together, our results indicate that KcNHX1 from an eremophyte can be used as a candidate gene to improve multiple stress tolerance in other plants.

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The work was funded by National Natural Science Foundation of China (31660085 and 31460071).

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Correspondence to Yanqin Wang.

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Wang, Y., Guo, Y., Li, F. et al. Overexpression of KcNHX1 gene confers tolerance to multiple abiotic stresses in Arabidopsis thaliana. J Plant Res 134, 613–623 (2021).

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  • Abiotic stress
  • Karelinia caspica
  • KcNHX1
  • Na+/H+ antiporter
  • Tolerance to heat stress