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The Arabidopsis PLAT domain protein1 promotes abiotic stress tolerance and growth in tobacco

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Abstract

Plant growth and consequently crop yield can be severely compromised by abiotic and biotic stress conditions. Transgenic approaches that resulted in increased tolerance against abiotic stresses often were typically accompanied by adverse effects on plant growth and fitness under optimal growing conditions. Proteins that belong to the PLAT-plant-stress protein family harbour a single PLAT (Polycystin, Lipoxygenase, Alpha-toxin and Triacylglycerol lipase) domain and are ubiquitously present in monocot and dicot plant species. Until now, only limited data is available for PLAT-plant-stress family members, which suggested that these proteins in general could promote tolerance towards stress responses. We studied the function of the Arabidopsis PLAT-plant-stress protein AtPLAT1 employing heterologous gain-of-function analysis in tobacco. AtPLAT1 conferred increased abiotic stress tolerance in tobacco, evident by improved tolerance towards cold, drought and salt stresses, and promoted growth, reflected by a faster development under non-stressed conditions. However, the overexpression of AtPLAT1 in tobacco reduced the tolerance towards biotic stress conditions and, therefore, could be involved in regulating the crosstalk between abiotic and biotic stress responses. Thus, we showed that heterologously expressed AtPLAT1 functions as positive regulator of abiotic stress tolerance and plant growth, which could be an important new asset for strategies to develop plants with improved abiotic stress tolerance, without growth and subsequent yield penalties under optimal growth conditions.

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Acknowledgements

This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (NRF-2014R1A1A2004432), Republic of Korea (T.K.H.), and by the Fundación Séneca, Comunidad Autónoma de la Región de Murcia (A.A.). We thank K. Remele and W. Pfeifhofer for help with scopoletin determination.

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Correspondence to Thomas Roitsch.

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Tae Kyung Hyun, Alfonso Albacete and Eric van der Graaff have equally contributed to this work.

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Hyun, T.K., Albacete, A., van der Graaff, E. et al. The Arabidopsis PLAT domain protein1 promotes abiotic stress tolerance and growth in tobacco. Transgenic Res 24, 651–663 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11248-015-9868-6

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