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Conservation of microRNA-mediated regulatory networks in response to copper stress in grapevine

Leng, Xiangpeng, Wang, Peipei, Zhao, Pengcheng, Wang, Mengqi, Cui, Liwen, Shangguan, Lingfei, Wang, Chen
Plant growth regulation 2017 v.82 no.2 pp. 293-304
Vitis, copper, gene expression regulation, homeostasis, messenger RNA, microRNA, proteins
Plants have developed a complex regulatory networks to appropriately regulate copper homeostasis in response to the frequently-changing availability of copper (Cu). However, little is known about miRNA-mediated Cu-regulatory networks in grapevine. To depict the regulatory mechanism of Cu-responsive microRNAs (miRNAs) in grapevine, three conserved Cu-responsive miRNAs (miR397, miR398 and miR408) that had the most copies of the Cu-response element (CuRE) were investigated in response to copper availability. It was found that the suppression of Cu-associated miRNAs followed by the up-regulation of their target genes encoding Cu-containing proteins. Four target genes such as vvi-LAC4 and vvi-LAC17 for miR397, vvi-PC and vvi-LAC12 for miR408 were experimentally verified by RLM-RACE. The results showed that these vvi-miRNAs negatively regulated expression of their target mRNAs through guiding corresponding target mRNA cleavage. Analysis of cis-elements showed that three miRNAs were not only in response to Cu stress but also involved in a complicated regulation network to respond to environmental stress. Our results are of good help for better understanding miRNA-guided Cu stress regulatory networks in grapevine.