Molecular signal communication during arbuscular mycorrhizal formation induces significant transcriptional reprogramming of wheat (Triticum aestivum) roots

Hui Tian, Runze Wang, Mengjiao Li, Haiyan Dang, Zakaria M Solaiman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background and Aims
Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis begins with molecular signal communication (MSC) between AM fungi and the roots of the host plant. We aimed to test the hypothesis that the transcriptional profiles of wheat roots can be changed significantly by AM symbiotic signals, without direct contact.

Methods
Non-mycorrhizal (NM) and MSC treatments involved burying filter membrane bags containing sterilized and un-sterilized inoculum of the AM fungus Rhizophagus irregularis, respectively. The bags physically separated roots and AM structures but allowed molecular signals to pass through. Extracted RNA from wheat roots was sequenced by high-throughput sequencing.

Results
Shoot total nitrogen and phosphorus content of wheat plants was decreased by the MSC treatment. A total of 2360 differentially expressed genes (DEGs), including 1888 up-regulated DEGs and 472 down-regulated DEGs, were found dominantly distributed on chromosomes 2A, 2B, 2D, 3B, 5B and 5D. The expression of 59 and 121 genes was greatly up- and down-regulated, respectively. Only a portion of DEGs could be enriched into known terms during gene ontology analysis, and were mostly annotated to ‘catalytic activity’, ‘protein metabolic process’ and ‘membrane’ in the molecular function, biological process and cellular component ontology categories, respectively. More than 120 genes that may be involved in key processes during AM symbiosis development were regulated at the pre-physical contact stages.

Conclusions
The transcriptional profiles of wheat roots can be changed dramatically by MSC. Much of the information provided by our study is of great importance for understanding the mechanisms underlying the development of AM symbiosis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1109-1119
JournalAnnals of Botany
Volume124
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 27 Nov 2019

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