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MicroRNAs involved in auxin signalling modulate male sterility under high temperature stress in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum)

Update Time: 2017-06-23 21:12:07Click:902 times
Yuanhao Ding, Yizan Ma, Nian Liu, Jiao Xu, Qin Hu, Yaoyao Li, Yuanlong Wu, Sai Xie, Longfu Zhu, Ling Min, Xianlong Zhang.2017.Plant Journal


           Male sterility caused by long-term high temperature (HT) stress occurs widely in crops. MicroRNAs (miRNAs), a class of endogenous non-coding small RNAs, play an important role in the plant response to various abiotic stresses. To dissect the working principle of miRNAs in male sterility under HT stress in cotton, a total of 112 known miRNAs, 270 novel miRNAs and 347 target genes were identified from anthers of HT-insensitive (84021) and HT-sensitive (H05) cotton cultivars under normal temperature (NT) and HT conditions through small RNA and degradome sequencing. qRT-PCR and 5′-RLM-RACE experiments were used to validate the sequencing data. The results show that miR156 was suppressed by HT stress in both 84021 and H05; miR160 was suppressed in 84021 but induced in H05. Correspondingly, SPLs (target genes of miR156) were induced both in 84021 and H05; ARF10 and ARF17 (target genes of miR160) were induced in 84021 but suppressed in H05. Overexpressing miR160 increased cotton sensitivity to HT stress seen as anther indehiscence, associated with the suppression of ARF10 and ARF17 expression, thereby activating the auxin response that leads to anther indehiscence. Supporting this role for auxin, exogenous IAA leads to a stronger male sterility phenotype both in 84021 and H05 under HT stress. Cotton plants overexpressing miR157 suppressed the auxin signal, and also showed enhanced sensitivity to HT stress, with microspore abortion and anther indehiscence. Thus, we propose that the auxin signal, mediated by miRNAs, is essential for cotton anther fertility under HT stress.

PMID:28635129     DOI;10.1111/tpj.13620     IF=5.901