ABSTRACT: For plant cells in the early phases of water stress exposure, the genes induced under such conditions play a key role in detecting and responding to water deficit. In this study, potato cell suspensions were used as a simplified model system to dissect early molecular changes upon low water potential. In particular, the cDNA-amplified fragment length polymorphism approach was used to capture genes rapidly activated in potato cell cultures in response to water deficit induced by short-term exposure (up to 1 h) to polyethylene glycol. Selective amplifications with 38 primer combinations allowed the visualization of about 167 transcript-derived fragments (TDFs) differentially expressed upon exposure to low water potential. The gene expression pattern of 18 up-regulated genes was further investigated by semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis. Sequencing and similarity analysis revealed that TDFs present homologies chiefly with proteins involved in chaperone activity and protein degradation (hsps, proteinase precursor), in protein synthesis (elongation factor, ribosomal proteins) and in the ROS scavenging pathway (phenylalanine ammonia-lyase, peroxidase). Our findings might contribute to describe the potential role of genes activated in the early phases of plant response to drought.
Journal of Plant Research 07/2012; · 1.75 Impact Factor