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Article

Transcriptome Analysis of Pyrus betulaefolia Seedling Root Responses to Short-Term Potassium Deficiency

1
Jiangsu Provincial Key Lab of Solid Organic Waste Utilization, Jiangsu Collaborative Innovation Center of Solid Organic Wastes, Educational Ministry Engineering Center of Resource-Saving Fertilizers, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China
2
College of Life Science, Hubei Engineering University, Xiaogan 432100, China
3
School of Resources and Environmental Sciences, Henan Institute of Science and Technology, Xinxiang 453003, China
4
Department of Horticulture, 1111 Miller Plant Sciences, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21(22), 8857; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms21228857
Received: 28 October 2020 / Revised: 18 November 2020 / Accepted: 19 November 2020 / Published: 23 November 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ion Transport and Homeostasis in Plants)
Potassium (K) plays a crucial role in multiple physiological and developmental processes in plants. Its deficiency is a common abiotic stress that inhibits plant growth and reduces crop productivity. A better understanding of the mechanisms involved in plant responses to low K could help to improve the efficiency of K use in plants. However, such responses remain poorly characterized in fruit tree species such as pears (Pyrus sp). We analyzed the physiological and transcriptome responses of a commonly used pear rootstock, Pyrus betulaefolia, to K-deficiency stress (0 mM). Potassium deprivation resulted in apparent changes in root morphology, with short-term low-K stress resulting in rapidly enhanced root growth. Transcriptome analyses indicated that the root transcriptome was coordinately altered within 6 h after K deprivation, a process that continued until 15 d after treatment. Potassium deprivation resulted in the enhanced expression (up to 5-fold) of a putative high-affinity K+ transporter, PbHAK5 (Pbr037826.1), suggesting the up-regulation of mechanisms associated with K+ acquisition. The enhanced root growth in response to K-deficiency stress was associated with a rapid and sustained decrease in the expression of a transcription factor, PbMYB44 (Pbr015309.1), potentially involved in mediating auxin responses, and the increased expression of multiple genes associated with regulating root growth. The concentrations of several phytohormones including indoleacetic acid (IAA), ABA, ETH, gibberellin (GA3), and jasmonic acid (JA) were higher in response to K deprivation. Furthermore, genes coding for enzymes associated with carbon metabolism such as SORBITOL DEHYDROGENASE (SDH) and SUCROSE SYNTHASE (SUS) displayed greatly enhanced expression in the roots under K deprivation, presumably indicating enhanced metabolism to meet the increased energy demands for growth and K+ acquisition. Together, these data suggest that K deprivation in P. betulaefolia results in the rapid re-programming of the transcriptome to enhance root growth and K+ acquisition. These data provide key insights into the molecular basis for understanding low-K-tolerance mechanisms in pears and in other related fruit trees and identifying potential candidates that warrant further analyses. View Full-Text
Keywords: pear; potassium deficiency; root; potassium transporters and channels; transcriptome analysis; RNA-seq; DEGs pear; potassium deficiency; root; potassium transporters and channels; transcriptome analysis; RNA-seq; DEGs
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MDPI and ACS Style

Yang, H.; Li, Y.; Jin, Y.; Kan, L.; Shen, C.; Malladi, A.; Nambeesan, S.; Xu, Y.; Dong, C. Transcriptome Analysis of Pyrus betulaefolia Seedling Root Responses to Short-Term Potassium Deficiency. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21, 8857. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms21228857

AMA Style

Yang H, Li Y, Jin Y, Kan L, Shen C, Malladi A, Nambeesan S, Xu Y, Dong C. Transcriptome Analysis of Pyrus betulaefolia Seedling Root Responses to Short-Term Potassium Deficiency. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2020; 21(22):8857. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms21228857

Chicago/Turabian Style

Yang, Han, Yan Li, Yumeng Jin, Liping Kan, Changwei Shen, Anish Malladi, Savithri Nambeesan, Yangchun Xu, and Caixia Dong. 2020. "Transcriptome Analysis of Pyrus betulaefolia Seedling Root Responses to Short-Term Potassium Deficiency" International Journal of Molecular Sciences 21, no. 22: 8857. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms21228857

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