Through the use of subtractive hybridization analysis, we have identified 14 partial cDNA clones (pCa-DSRs) that are rapidly induced by dehydration in hot pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) roots. The predicted proteins encoded by Ca-DSRs are putatively involved in processes as diverse as primary and secondary metabolism, protein degradation, and stress responses, indicating the complexity of cellular responses to water deficit in hot pepper roots. Particularly, we investigated the detailed structural properties and expression profiles of Ca-DSR2 (Ca-DREBLP1: dehydration-responsive element binding-factor-like protein 1) encoding a protein that contains a single ERF/AP2 DNA-binding domain. Based on the conserved 14th valine and 19th glutamic acid residues in the ERF/AP2 domain, a basic amino acid stretch (PKKPAGRKKFR) near its N-terminal region, and DSAW signature sequence at the end of its ERF/AP2 domain, Ca-DREBLP1 was classified as a member of a DREB1-type subfamily. Gel retardation assays revealed that Ca-DREBLP1 was able to form a specific complex with the DRE/CRT motif, but not with the GCC box. When fused to the GAL4 DNA-binding domain, the Ca-DREBLP1190-215 mutant could effectively function as a trans-activator in yeast. This suggests that the extreme C-terminal region plays an essential role in transcription activation. In hot pepper plants, Ca-DREBLP1 was rapidly induced by dehydration, high salinity and, to a lesser extent, mechanical wounding, but not by cold stress. Thus, although the structural features of Ca-DREBLP1 resemble those of the DREB1-type proteins of Arabidopsis thaliana and rice plants, its induction patterns are reminiscent of the DREB2-type proteins, indicating that Ca-DREBLP1 is a novel class DREB subfamily in hot pepper.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Acknowledgments This work was supported by grants from the Plant Diversity Research Center (21st Century Frontier Research Program funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology of the Korean government, project number PF0330404-00) and the Plant Metabolism Research Center at Kyung Hee University (Science Research Center Program from the Korea Science and Engineering Foundation) to W.T.K.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Plant Science