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Modulation of proline metabolic gene expression in Arabidopsis thaliana under water-stressed conditions by a drought-mitigating Pseudomonas putida strain


Although amelioration of drought stress in plants by plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) is a well reported phenomenon, the molecular mechanisms governing it are not well understood. We have investigated the role of a drought ameliorating PGPR strain, Pseudomonas putida GAP-P45 on the regulation of proline metabolic gene expression in Arabidopsis thaliana under water-stressed conditions. Indeed, we found that Pseudomonas putida GAP-P45 alleviates the effects of water-stress in A. thaliana by drastic changes in proline metabolic gene expression profile at different time points post stress induction. Quantitative real-time expression analysis of proline metabolic genes in inoculated plants under water-stressed conditions showed a delayed but prolonged up-regulation of the expression of genes involved in proline biosynthesis, i.e., ornithine-Δ-aminotransferase (OAT), Δ 1 -pyrroline-5-carboxylate synthetase1 (P5CS1), Δ 1 -pyrroline-5-carboxylate reductase (P5CR), as well as proline catabolism, i.e., proline dehydrogenase1 (PDH1) and Δ 1 -pyrroline-5-carboxylate dehydrogenase (P5CDH). These observations were positively correlated with morpho-physiological evidences of water-stress mitigation in the plants inoculated with Pseudomonas putida GAP-P45 that showed better growth, increased fresh weight, enhanced plant water content, reduction in primary root length, enhanced chlorophyll content in leaves, and increased accumulation of endogenous proline. Our observations point towards PGPR-mediated enhanced proline turnover rate in A. thaliana under dehydration conditions.

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The authors thank Minakshi Grover (Principal Scientist, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi, India) for help in procuring the rhizobacterial strain used in this study.


This work was funded by BITS-Pilani Seed Grant Scheme and Science and Engineering Research Board, Govt. of India.

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Correspondence to Sridev Mohapatra.

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Ghosh, D., Sen, S. & Mohapatra, S. Modulation of proline metabolic gene expression in Arabidopsis thaliana under water-stressed conditions by a drought-mitigating Pseudomonas putida strain. Ann Microbiol 67, 655–668 (2017).

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  • Arabidopsis thaliana
  • Pseudomonas putida GAP-P45
  • Water-stress
  • Proline
  • Gene expression