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Memory responses of jasmonic acid‐associated Arabidopsis genes to a repeated dehydration stress

Liu, Ning, Staswick, Paul E., Avramova, Zoya
Plant, cell and environment 2016 v.39 no.11 pp. 2515-2529
Arabidopsis, abscisic acid, biosynthesis, drought, genes, jasmonic acid, models, signal transduction, stress response, transcription (genetics)
Dehydration stress activates numerous genes co‐regulated by diverse signaling pathways. Upon repeated exposures, however, a subset of these genes does not respond maintaining instead transcription at their initial pre‐stressed levels (‘revised‐response’ genes). Most of these genes are involved in jasmonic acid (JA) biosynthesis, JA‐signaling and JA‐mediated stress responses. How these JA‐associated genes are regulated to provide different responses to similar dehydration stresses is an enigma. Here, we investigate molecular mechanisms that contribute to this transcriptional behavior. The memory‐mechanism is stress‐specific: one exposure to dehydration stress or to abscisic acid (ABA) is required to prevent transcription in the second. Both ABA‐mediated and JA‐mediated pathways are critical for the activation of these genes, but the two signaling pathways interact differently during a single or multiple encounters with dehydration stress. Synthesis of JA during the first (S1) but not the second dehydration stress (S2) accounts for the altered transcriptional responses. We propose a model for these memory responses, wherein lack of MYC2 and of JA synthesis in S2 is responsible for the lack of expression of downstream genes. The similar length of the memory displayed by different memory‐type genes suggests biological relevance for transcriptional memory as a gene‐regulating mechanism during recurring bouts of drought.