Frontiers in Plant Science

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ISSN / EISSN : 1664-462X / 1664-462X
Current Publisher: Frontiers Media SA (10.3389)
Total articles ≅ 14,158
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Weizhi Ouyang, Xiwen Zhang, Yong Peng, Qing Zhang, Zhilin Cao, Guoliang Li,
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.634679

Abstract:
Characterizing genome-wide histone posttranscriptional modifications and transcriptional factor occupancy is crucial for deciphering their biological functions. Chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by sequencing (ChIP-seq) is a powerful method for genome-wide profiling of histone modifications and transcriptional factor-binding sites. However, the current ChIP-seq experimental procedure in plants requires significant material and several days for completion. CUT&Tag is an alternative method of ChIP-seq for low-sample and single-cell epigenomic profiling using protein A-Tn5 transposase fusion proteins (PAT). In this study, we developed a nucleus CUT&Tag (nCUT&Tag) protocol based on the live-cell CUT&Tag technology. Our results indicate that nCUT&Tag could be used for histone modifications profiling in both monocot rice and dicot rapeseed using crosslinked or fresh tissues. In addition, both active and repressive histone marks such as H3K4me3 and H3K9me2 can be identified using our nCUT&Tag. More importantly, all the steps in nCUT&Tag can be finished in only 1 day, and the assay can be performed with as little as 0.01 g of plant tissue as starting materials. Therefore, our results demonstrate that nCUT&Tag is an efficient alternative strategy for plant epigenomic studies.
Meriem Aoun, Matthew N. Rouse, James A. Kolmer, Ajay Kumar,
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.640739

Abstract:
Leaf rust, caused by Puccinia triticina (Pt), stripe rust caused by Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (Pst), and stem rust caused by Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici (Pgt) are major diseases to wheat production globally. Host resistance is the most suitable approach to manage these fungal pathogens. We investigated the phenotypic and genotypic structure of resistance to leaf rust, stem rust, and stripe rust pathogen races at the seedling stage in a collection of advanced durum wheat breeding lines and cultivars adapted to Upper Mid-West region of the United States. Phenotypic evaluation showed that the majority of the durum wheat genotypes were susceptible to Pt isolates adapted to durum wheat, whereas all the genotypes were resistant to common wheat type-Pt isolate. The majority of genotypes were resistant to stripe rust and stem rust pathogen races. The durum panel genotyped using Illumina iSelect 90 K wheat SNP assay was used for genome-wide association mapping (GWAS). The GWAS revealed 64 marker-trait associations (MTAs) representing six leaf rust resistance loci located on chromosome arms 2AS, 2AL, 5BS, 6AL, and 6BL. Two of these loci were identified at the positions of Lr52 and Lr64 genes, whereas the remaining loci are most likely novel. A total of 46 MTAs corresponding to four loci located on chromosome arms 1BS, 5BL, and 7BL were associated with stripe rust response. None of these loci correspond to designated stripe rust resistance genes. For stem rust, a total of 260 MTAs, representing 22 loci were identified on chromosome arms 1BL, 2BL, 3AL, 3BL, 4AL, 5AL, 5BL, 6AS, 6AL, 6BL, and 7BL. Four of these loci were located at the positions of known genes/alleles (Sr7b, Sr8155B1, Sr13a, and Sr13b). The discovery of known and novel rust resistance genes and their linked SNPs will help diversify rust resistance in durum wheat.
Jaromír Kučera, Marek Svitok, Eliška Gbúrová Štubňová, Lenka Mártonfiová, Clément Lafon Placette, Marek Slovák
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.589093

Abstract:
Plant speciation results from intricate processes such as polyploidization, reproductive strategy shifts and adaptation. These evolutionary processes often co-occur, blurring their respective contributions and interactions in the speciation continuum. Here, relying on a large-scale study, we tested whether gynodioecy triggers the divergent evolution of flower morphology and genome between sexes, and contributes to the establishment of polyploids and colonization of ecological niches in Stellaria graminea. We found that gynodioecy in S. graminea leads to flower morphology divergence between females and hermaphrodites, likely due to sexual selection. Contrary to our expectations, gynodioecy occurs evenly in diploids and tetraploids, suggesting that this reproductive strategy was not involved in the establishment of polyploids. Both diploid and tetraploid females have a larger genome size than hermaphrodites, suggesting the presence of sex chromosomes. Finally, ecology differs between cytotypes and to a lesser extent between sexes, suggesting that the link between environment and presence of females is indirect and likely explained by other aspects of the species’ life history. Our study shows that gynodioecy leads to the consistent evolution of sexual traits across a wide range of populations, cytotypes and environments within a given species, and this likely contributes to the phenotypic and genetic distinctiveness of the species from its sister clades.
Ander Castander-Olarieta, Cátia Pereira, Itziar A. Montalbán, Vera M. Mendes, Sandra Correia, Sonia Suárez-Álvarez, Bruno Manadas, Jorge Canhoto,
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.631239

Abstract:
Somatic embryogenesis is the process by which bipolar structures with no vascular connection with the surrounding tissue are formed from a single or a group of vegetative cells, and in conifers it can be divided into five different steps: initiation, proliferation, maturation, germination and acclimatization. Somatic embryogenesis has long been used as a model to study the mechanisms regulating stress response in plants, and recent research carried out in our laboratory has demonstrated that high temperatures during initial stages of conifer somatic embryogenesis modify subsequent phases of the process, as well as the behavior of the resulting plants ex vitro. The development of high-throughput techniques has facilitated the study of the molecular response of plants to numerous stress factors. Proteomics offers a reliable image of the cell status and is known to be extremely susceptible to environmental changes. In this study, the proteome of radiata pine somatic embryos was analyzed by LC-MS after the application of high temperatures during initiation of embryonal masses [(23°C, control; 40°C (4 h); 60°C (5 min)]. At the same time, the content of specific soluble sugars and sugar alcohols was analyzed by HPLC. Results confirmed a significant decrease in the initiation rate of embryonal masses under 40°C treatments (from 44 to 30.5%) and an increasing tendency in the production of somatic embryos (from 121.87 to 170.83 somatic embryos per gram of embryogenic tissue). Besides, heat provoked a long-term readjustment of the protein synthesis machinery: a great number of structural constituents of ribosomes were increased under high temperatures, together with the down-regulation of the enzyme methionine-tRNA ligase. Heat led to higher contents of heat shock proteins and chaperones, transmembrane transport proteins, proteins related with post-transcriptional regulation (ARGONAUTE 1D) and enzymes involved in the synthesis of fatty acids, specific compatible sugars (myo-inositol) and cell-wall carbohydrates. On the other hand, the protein adenosylhomocysteinase and enzymes linked with the glycolytic pathway, nitrogen assimilation and oxidative stress response were found at lower levels.
Minggang Xiao, Zixuan Li, Li Zhu, Jiayi Wang, Bo Zhang, Fuyu Zheng, Beiping Zhao, Haiwen Zhang, , Zhijin Zhang
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.598173

Abstract:
Ascorbate (ASC) plays a critical role in plant stress response. The antioxidant role of ASC has been well-studied, but there are still several confusing questions about the function of ASC in plant abiotic stress response. ASC can scavenge reactive oxygen species (ROS) and should be helpful for plant stress tolerance. But in some cases, increasing ASC content impairs plant abiotic stress tolerance, whereas, inhibiting ASC synthesis or regeneration enhances plant stress tolerance. This confusing phenomenon indicates that ASC may have multiple roles in plant abiotic stress response not just as an antioxidant, though many studies more or less ignored other roles of ASC in plant. In fact, ACS also can act as the cofactor of some enzymes, which are involved in the synthesis, metabolism, and modification of a variety of substances, which has important effects on plant stress response. In addition, ASC can monitor and effectively regulate cell redox status. Therefore, we believe that ASC has atleast triple roles in plant abiotic stress response: as the antioxidant to scavenge accumulated ROS, as the cofactor to involve in plant metabolism, or as the regulator to coordinate the actions of various signal pathways under abiotic stress. The role of ASC in plant abiotic stress response is important and complex. The detail role of ASC in plant abiotic stress response should be analyzed according to specific physiological process in specific organ. In this review, we discuss the versatile roles of ASC in the response of plants to abiotic stresses.
Haijiao Liu, Hongrui Gu, Chen Ye, Cunwu Guo, Yifan Zhu, HuiChuan Huang, Yixiang Liu, Xiahong He, Min Yang,
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.628294

Abstract:
Adjusting planting density is a common agricultural practice used to achieve maximum yields. However, whether the quality of medicinal herbs can be improved by implementing appropriate planting densities is still uncertain. The medicinal crop Panax notoginseng was used to analyze the effects of planting density on growth and ginsenoside accumulation, and the possible mechanisms of these effects were revealed through metabonomics. The results showed that P. notoginseng achieved high ginsenoside accumulation at high planting densities (8 × 8 and 10 × 10 cm), while simultaneously achieved high biomass and ginsenoside accumulation at moderate planting density of 15 × 15 cm. At the moderate planting density, the primary metabolism (starch and sucrose metabolism) and secondary metabolism (the biosynthesis of phytohormone IAA and ginsenoside) of the plants were significantly enhanced. However, the strong intraspecific competition at the high planting densities resulted in stress as well as the accumulation of phytohormones (SA and JA), antioxidants (gentiobiose, oxalic acid, dehydroascorbic acid) and other stress resistance-related metabolites. Interestingly, the dry biomass and ginsenoside content were significantly lower at low densities (20 × 20 and 30 × 30 cm) with low intraspecific competition, which disturbed normal carbohydrate metabolism by upregulating galactose metabolism. In summary, an appropriate planting density was benefit for the growth and accumulation of ginsenosides in P. notoginseng by balancing primary metabolism and secondary metabolism.
Rui Wu, Simcha Lev-Yadun, Lu Sun, ,
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.632464

Abstract:
Glandular trichomes are well known to participate in plant chemical and physical defenses against herbivores, especially herbivorous insects. However, little is known about large-scale geographical patterns in glandular trichome occurrence. Herbivory pressure is thought to be higher at low elevations because of warmer and more stable climates. We therefore predicted a higher proportion of species with glandular trichomes at low elevations than at higher elevations. We compiled glandular trichome data (presence/absence) for 6,262 angiosperm species from the Hengduan Mountains (a global biodiversity hotspot in southwest China). We tested the elevational gradient (800–5,000 m a.s.l.) in the occurrence of plant species with glandular trichomes, and its correlations with biotic (occurrence of herbivorous insects) and abiotic factors, potentially shaping the elevational gradient in the occurrence of glandular trichomes. We found a significantly positive relationship between elevation and the occurrence of glandular trichomes, with the proportion of species having glandular trichomes increasing from 11.89% at 800 m a.s.l. to 17.92% at above 4,700 m. This cross-species relationship remained significant after accounting for phylogenetic relationships between species. Herbivorous insect richness peaked at mid-elevations and its association with the incidence of glandular trichomes was weak. Mean annual temperature was the most important factor associated negatively with glandular trichomes. Our results do not support the hypothesis that plant defenses decrease with increasing elevation. In contrast, a higher proportion of plant species with glandular trichome toward higher elevations is observed. Our results also highlight the importance of considering the simultaneous influences of biotic and abiotic factors in testing geographical variation in multifunctional plant defenses.
Hao-Chun Hsu,
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.650836

Abstract:
Homology is a crucial concept that should be considered while conducting a comparative analysis between organisms. In particular, in the subtribe Ligeriinae, the nectar guide pattern is associated with high diversity in petal shapes and sizes. This largely limits researchers to exclusively examining the interspecific variation in nectar guide patterns on the developmentally homologous region. Thus, to solve this problem, we proposed an approach for defining a homologous region of interest (ROI) that aligns the petal image between specimens based on petal contours and vasculatures. We identified petal contours and vasculatures from the fresh petal image and its histological image through image processing. The homologous ROI was subsequently obtained by applying geometric transformation to the contour and vasculature. The qualification and quantification of nectar guide patterns were subsequently performed based on the homologous ROI. Four patterning modes, namely vascular, random, distal, and proximal, were defined for the qualitative analysis of nectar guide patterns. In the quantitative analysis, principal component (PC) analysis was applied to homologous ROIs, and the PC score of each specimen served as the trait values of nectar guide patterns. The results of the two analyses coincided, and both showed significant associations between nectar guide patterns and pollination types. The proximal mode (corresponding to PC1) and distal mode (corresponding to PC2) together showed the strongest association with pollination types. Species exhibiting the hummingbird and bee pollination types tended to recruit the distal and proximal modes, respectively. Our study conducted a comparative analysis of nectar guide patterns on the developmentally homologous region and provided a comprehensive view of the variation in the nectar guide patterns of Ligeriinae.
, Meng Wu, Matthew J. S. Gibson
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.635990

Abstract:
Elevated rates of evolution in reproductive proteins are commonly observed in animal species, and are thought to be driven by the action of sexual selection and sexual conflict acting specifically on reproductive traits. Whether similar patterns are broadly observed in other biological groups is equivocal. Here, we examine patterns of protein divergence among wild tomato species (Solanum section Lycopersicon), to understand forces shaping the evolution of reproductive genes in this diverse, rapidly evolving plant clade. By comparing rates of molecular evolution among loci expressed in reproductive and non-reproductive tissues, our aims were to test if: (a) reproductive-specific loci evolve more rapidly, on average, than non-reproductive loci; (b) ‘male’-specific loci evolve at different rates than ‘female’-specific loci; (c) genes expressed exclusively in gametophytic (haploid) tissue evolve differently from genes expressed in sporophytic (diploid) tissue or in both tissue types; and (d) mating system variation (a potential proxy for the expected strength of sexual selection and/or sexual conflict) affects patterns of protein evolution. We observed elevated evolutionary rates in reproductive proteins. However, this pattern was most evident for female- rather than male-specific loci, both broadly and for individual loci inferred to be positively selected. These elevated rates might be facilitated by greater tissue-specificity of reproductive proteins, as faster rates were also associated with more narrow expression domains. In contrast, we found little evidence that evolutionary rates are consistently different in loci experiencing haploid selection (gametophytic-exclusive loci), or in lineages with quantitatively different mating systems. Overall while reproductive protein evolution is generally elevated in this diverse plant group, some specific patterns of evolution are more complex than those reported in other (largely animal) systems, and include a more prominent role for female-specific loci among adaptively evolving genes.
, Marie-Stéphanie Samain, Isabel Marques, Sean W. Graham,
Published: 12 April 2021
Frontiers in Plant Science, Volume 12; doi:10.3389/fpls.2021.642598

Abstract:
Phylogenetic relationships within the magnoliid order Piperales have been studied extensively, yet the relationships of the monotypic family Lactoridaceae and the holoparasitic Hydnoraceae to the remainder of the order remain a matter of debate. Since the first confident molecular phylogenetic placement of Hydnoraceae among Piperales, different studies have recovered various contradictory topologies. Most phylogenetic hypotheses were inferred using only a few loci and have had incomplete taxon sampling at the genus level. Based on these results and an online survey of taxonomic opinion, the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group lumped both Hydnoraceae and Lactoridaceae in Aristolochiaceae; however, the latter family continues to have unclear relationships to the aforementioned taxa. Here we present extensive phylogenomic tree reconstructions based on up to 137 loci from all three subcellular genomes for all genera of Piperales. We infer relationships based on a variety of phylogenetic methods, explore instances of phylogenomic discordance between the subcellular genomes, and test alternative topologies. Consistent with these phylogenomic results and a consideration of the principles of phylogenetic classification, we propose to exclude Hydnoraceae and Lactoridaceae from the broad circumscription of Aristolochiaceae, and instead favor recognition of four monophyletic and morphologically well circumscribed families in the perianth-bearing Piperales: Aristolochiaceae, Asaraceae, Hydnoraceae, and Lactoridaceae, with a total of six families in the order.
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