Salt stress leads to a stress response, called the unfolded protein response (UPR), in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). UPR is also induced in a wide range of organisms by zinc deficiency. However, it is not clear whether regulation of zinc levels is involved in the initiation of the UPR in plant response to salt stress. In this study, a putative zinc transporter, ZTP29, was identified in Arabidopsis thaliana. ZTP29 localizes to the ER membrane and is expressed primarily in hypocotyl and cotyledon tissues, but its expression can be induced in root tissue by salt stress. T-DNA insertion into the ZTP29 gene led to NaCl hypersensitivity in seed germination and seedling growth, leaf etiolation, and widening of cells in the root elongation zone. In addition, in ztp29 mutant plants, salt stress-induced upregulation of the UPR pathway genes BiP2 and bZIP60 was inhibited. Furthermore, under conditions of salt stress, upregulation of BiP2 and bZIP60 was inhibited by treatment with high concentrations of zinc in both control and ztp29 plants. However, zinc chelation restored salt stress-induced BiP2 and bZIP60 upregulation in ztp29 mutant plants. These experimental results suggest that ZTP29 is involved in the response to salt stress, perhaps through regulation of zinc levels required to induce the UPR pathway.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 1, 2010
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