Regulation of gene expression by chromosome 5A during cold hardening in wheat

Gábor Kocsy, Benedikt Athmer, Dragan Perovic, Axel Himmelbach, Attila Szűcs, Ildikó Vashegyi, Patrick Schweizer, Gábor Galiba, Nils Stein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Cold hardening is necessary to achieve the genetically determined maximum freezing tolerance and to reduce yield losses in winter cereals. The aim of the present study was to determine a set of genes with an important role in this process, by comparing of chromosome 5A substitution lines with different levels of freezing tolerance, since chromosome 5A is a major regulator of this trait. During 21 days of treatment at 2°C, 303 genes were upregulated, while 222 were down-regulated at most sampling points, and 156 at around half of them (out of the 10,297 unigenes studied). The freezing-tolerant substitution line exhibited 1.5 times as many differentially expressed genes than the sensitive one. The transcription of 78 genes (39 up-regulated) proved to be chromosome 5Adependent. These genes encoded proteins involved in transcriptional regulation, defence processes and carbohydrate metabolism. Three of the chromosome 5A-related genes, coding for a cold-responsive, a Ca-binding and an embryo and meristem-related protein, were genetically mapped and characterized in further detail. The present experimental system was appropriate for the selection of chromosome 5A-related genes involved in short- and long-term cold acclimation in wheat. By modifying the expression of these genes it may be possible to improve freezing tolerance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)351-363
Number of pages13
JournalMolecular Genetics and Genomics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2010
Externally publishedYes


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