Water deficit is one of the main abiotic factors that affect plant productivity in subtropical regions. To identify genes induced during the water stress response in Bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon), cDNA macroarrays were used. The macroarray analysis identified 189 drought-responsive candidate genes from C. dactylon, of which 120 were up-regulated and 69 were down-regulated. The candidate genes were classified into seven groups by cluster analysis of expression levels across two intensities and three durations of imposed stress. Annotation using BLASTX suggested that up-regulated genes may be involved in proline biosynthesis, signal transduction pathways, protein repair systems, and removal of toxins, while down-regulated genes were mostly related to basic plant metabolism such as photosynthesis and glycolysis. The functional classification of gene ontology (GO) was consistent with the BLASTX results, also suggesting some crosstalk between abiotic and biotic stress. Comparative analysis of cis-regulatory elements from the candidate genes implicated specific elements in drought response in Bermudagrass. Although only a subset of genes was studied, Bermudagrass shared many drought-responsive genes and cis-regulatory elements with other botanical models, supporting a strategy of cross-taxon application of drought-responsive genes, regulatory cues, and physiological-genetic information.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 20, 2009
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