Functional characterization of late embryogenesis abundant genes and promoters in pearl millet ( Pennisetum glaucum L.) for abiotic stress tolerance

Divya, K and Palakolanu, S R and Kavi Kishor, P and Rajesh, A S and Vadez, V and Sharma, K K and Mathur, P B (2021) Functional characterization of late embryogenesis abundant genes and promoters in pearl millet ( Pennisetum glaucum L.) for abiotic stress tolerance. Physiologia Plantarum (TSI). pp. 1-13. ISSN 0031-9317

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Late embryogenesis abundant (LEA) genes display distinct functions in response to abiotic stresses in plants. In pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum L.), a total of 21 PgLEA genes were identified and classified into six groups including LEA1, LEA2, LEA3, LEA5, LEA7, and dehydrins (DHN). Open reading frames (ORFs) of PgLEAs range from 291 bp (PgLEA1-1) to 945 bp (PgLEA2-11) and distributed randomly among the seven chromosomes. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that all PgLEA proteins are closely related to sorghum LEA proteins. The PgLEAs were found to be expressed differentially under high progressive vapor pressure deficit (VPD), PgLEA7 was significantly expressed under high VPD and was selected for functional validation. In silico analysis of the PgLEA promoter regions revealed abiotic stress-specific cis-acting elements such as ABRE, CCAAT, MYBS, and LTRE. Based on the type of motifs, PgLEAPC promoter (758 bp), its deletion 1 (PgLpd1, 349 bp) and deletion 2 (PgLpd2, 125 bp) were cloned into the plant expression vector pMDC164 having the promoter-less uidA gene. All the three plant expression vectors were introduced into tobacco through Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation to obtain T1 and T2 generations of transgenic plants. Based on expression of the uidA gene, tissue-specific expression was observed in mature stems, roots and seedlings of PgLEAPC and PgLpd1 carrying transgenics only. While the transgenic PgLEAPC plants displayed significantly higher uidA expression in the stem and root tissues under salt, drought, heat, and cold stresses, very low or no expression was observed in PgLpd1 and PgLpd2 transgenics under the tested stress conditions. The results of this study indicate that the complete promoter of PgLEAPC plays a role in developing abiotic stress tolerance in plants.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Global Research Program - Accelerated Crop Improvement
CRP: CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals (GLDC)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Pearl Millet, Abiotic Stress
Subjects: Others > Abiotic Stress
Mandate crops > Millets > Pearl Millet
Depositing User: Mr Arun S
Date Deposited: 09 Nov 2021 08:43
Last Modified: 09 Nov 2021 08:43
Official URL:
Acknowledgement: Palakolanu Sudhakar Reddy acknowledges the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India for the research grant through the INSPIRE Faculty Award No. IFALSPA-06 and the partial support from the Core Grant Research (CRG) grant file no. DST No: EMR/20l6/006726. Thanks to the Dr. Rajeev Varshney and Mr. Prasad Bajaj, SISU theme, ICRISAT, for the sequence extraction from the pearl millet genome. This study was undertaken as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes & Dryland Cereals (CRP-GLDC). ICRISAT is a CGIAR research center.
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