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Nitric Oxide-Mediated Transcriptional Changes in Arabidopsis thaliana

December 2003 , Volume 16 , Number  12
Pages  1,094 - 1,105

Annalisa Polverari , 1 Barbara Molesini , 1 Mario Pezzotti , 1 Roberto Buonaurio , 2 Mario Marte , 2 and Massimo Delledonne 1

1Dipartimento Scientifico e Tecnologico, Università degli Studi di Verona, 37134 Verona, Italy; 2Dipartimento di Arboricoltura e Protezione delle Piante, Università degli Studi di Perugia, 06121 Perugia, Italy


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Accepted 25 July 2003.

Nitric oxide (NO) is an essential regulatory molecule in several developmental processes and in the stress response in both animal and plant systems. Furthermore, key features of plant resistance to pathogens have been shown to depend on NO production, e.g., defense gene expression and the activation of a hypersensitive reaction (HR) in synergy with reactive oxygen species (ROS). Due to the many possible mechanisms of NO action, a clear picture of its involvement in plant resistance to pathogens is far from being achieved. Transcriptional changes related to NO action are likely to play a significant role in resistance and cell death. We investigated the changes in the expression profiles of Arabi-dopsis thaliana following infiltration with the NO donor sodium nitroprusside, by cDNA-amplification fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) transcript profiling. Altered expression patterns were detected for 120 of the approximately 2,500 cDNAs examined. Sequence analysis revealed homologies with genes involved in signal transduction, disease resistance and stress response, photosynthesis, cellular transport, and basic metabolism or with sequences coding for unknown proteins. Comparison of the expression profiles with data from public microarray sources revealed that many of the identified genes modulated by NO were previously reported to be modulated in disease-related experiments.


Additional keywords: defense-related responses, programmed cell death.

The American Phytopathological Society, 2003