Root phenotypes of dwarf and "overgrowth" SLN1 barley mutants, and implications for hypoxic stress tolerance

Jorge Moriconi, Lukasz Kotula, Guillermo E. Santa-Maria, Timothy D. Colmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Gibberellins are central to the regulation of plant development and growth. Action of gibberellins involves the degradation of DELLA proteins, which are negative regulators of growth. In barley (Hordeum vulgare), certain mutations affecting genes involved in gibberellin synthesis or coding for the barley DELLA protein (Sln1) confer dwarfism. Recent studies have identified new alleles of Sln1 with the capacity to revert the dwarf phenotype back to the taller phenotypes. While the effect of these overgrowth alleles on shoot phenotypes has been explored, no information is available for roots. Here, we examined aspects of the root phenotypes displayed by plants with various Slnl gene alleles, and tested responses to growth in an O-2-deficient root-zone as occurs during soil waterlogging. One overgrowth line, bearing the Sln1d.8 allele carrying two amino acid substitutions (one in the amino terminus and one in the GRAS domain of the encoded DELLA protein), displays profound and opposite effects on shoot height and root length. While it stimulates shoot height, it severely compromises root length by a reduction of cell size in zones distal to the root apex. In addition, Sln1d.8 plants counteract the negative effect of the original mutation on the formation of adventitious roots. Interestingly, plants bearing this allele display enhanced resistance to flooding stress in a way non-related with increased root porosity. Thus, various Slnl gene alleles contribute to root phenotypes and can also influence plant responses to root-zone O-2 deficiency stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-70
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Plant Physiology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


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