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The Transcriptomic Responses Of Pinus Massoniana To Drought Stress

Mingfeng Du, Guijie Ding, Q. Cai
Published 2018 · Biology

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Masson pine (Pinus massoniana) is a major fast-growing timber species planted in southern China, a region of seasonal drought. Using a drought-tolerance genotype of Masson pine, we conducted large-scale transcriptome sequencing using Illumina technology. This work aimed to evaluate the transcriptomic responses of Masson pine to different levels of drought stress. First, 3397, 1695 and 1550 unigenes with differential expression were identified by comparing plants subjected to light, moderate or severe drought with control plants. Second, several gene ontology (GO) categories (oxidation-reduction and metabolism) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways (plant hormone signal transduction and metabolic pathways) were enriched, indicating that the expression levels of some genes in these enriched GO terms and pathways were altered under drought stress. Third, several transcription factors (TFs) associated with circadian rhythms (HY5 and LHY), signal transduction (ERF), and defense responses (WRKY) were identified, and these TFs may play key roles in adapting to drought stress. Drought also caused significant changes in the expression of certain functional genes linked to osmotic adjustment (P5CS), abscisic acid (ABA) responses (NCED, PYL, PP2C and SnRK), and reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenging (GPX, GST and GSR). These transcriptomic results provide insight into the molecular mechanisms of drought stress adaptation in Masson pine.
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