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Title: ATR, a DNA damage signaling kinase, is involved in aluminum response in barley
Authors: Szurman-Zubrzycka, Miriam
Nawrot, Małgorzata
Jelonek, Janusz
Dziekanowski, Mariusz
Kwaśniewska, Jolanta
Szarejko, Iwona
Keywords: aluminum; ATR; DDR pathway; barley; TILLING
Issue Date: 2019
Citation: "Frontiers in Plant Science" Vol. 10 (2019), art. no 1299
Abstract: Ataxia Telangiectasia and Rad-3-related protein (ATR) is a DNA damage signaling kinase required for the monitoring of DNA integrity. Together with ATM and SOG1, it is a key player in the transcriptional regulation of DNA damage response (DDR) genes in plants. In this study, we describe the role of ATR in the DDR pathway in barley and the function of the HvATR gene in response to DNA damages induced by aluminum toxicity. Aluminum is the third most abundant element in the Earth’s crust. It becomes highly phytotoxic in acidic soils, which comprise more than 50% of arable lands worldwide. At low pH, Al is known to be a genotoxic agent causing DNA damage and cell cycle arrest. We present barley mutants, hvatr.g and hvatr.i, developed by TILLING strategy. The hvatr.g mutant carries a G6054A missense mutation in the ATR gene, leading to the substitution of a highly conserved amino acid in the protein (G1015S). The hvatr.g mutant showed the impaired DDR pathway. It accumulated DNA damages in the nuclei of root meristem cells when grown in control conditions. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) analysis revealed that 60% of mutant nuclei possessed DNA nicks and breaks, whereas in the wild type only 2% of the nuclei were TUNELpositive. The high frequency of DNA damages did not lead to the inhibition of the cell cycle progression, but the mutant showed an increased number of cells in the G2/M phase. In response to treatments with different Al doses, hvatr.g showed a high level of tolerance. The retention of root growth, which is the most evident symptom of Al toxicity, was not observed in the mutant, as it was in its parent variety. Furthermore, Al treatment increased the level of DNA damages, but did not affect the mitotic activity and the cell cycle profile in the hvatr.g mutant. A similar phenotype was observed for the hvatr.i mutant, carrying another missense mutation leading to G903E substitution in the HvATR protein. Our results demonstrate that the impaired mechanism of DNA damage response may lead to aluminum tolerance. They shed a new light on the role of the ATR-dependent DDR pathway in an agronomically important species.
DOI: 10.3389/fpls.2019.01299
ISSN: 1664-462X
Appears in Collections:Artykuły (WNP)

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