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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(12), 2130; doi:10.3390/ijms17122130

Identification of Heat Shock Transcription Factor Genes Involved in Thermotolerance of Octoploid Cultivated Strawberry

1
Institute of Medical Sciences, Tzu-Chi University, Hualien 97004, Taiwan
2
Department of Life Sciences, Tzu-Chi University, Hualien 97004, Taiwan
3
Department of Molecular Biology and Human Genetics, Tzu-Chi University, Hualien 97004, Taiwan
4
Institute of Molecular Medicine, National Tsing-Hua University, Hsinchu 30013, Taiwan
5
Biomedical Technology and Device Research Laboratories, Industrial Technology Research Institute, Hsinchu 30011, Taiwan
These authors contributed equally to this study.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Jianhua Zhu
Received: 2 September 2016 / Revised: 12 December 2016 / Accepted: 13 December 2016 / Published: 17 December 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Botany)
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Abstract

Heat shock transcription factors (HSFs) are mainly involved in the activation of genes in response to heat stress as well as other abiotic and biotic stresses. The growth, development, reproduction, and yield of strawberry are strongly limited by extreme temperatures and droughts. In this study, we used Illumina sequencing and obtained transcriptome data set from Fragaria × ananassa Duchessne cv. Toyonoka. Six contigs and three unigenes were confirmed to encode HSF proteins (FaTHSFs). Subsequently, we characterized the biological functions of two particularly selected unigenes, FaTHSFA2a and FaTHSFB1a, which were classified into class A2 and B HSFs, respectively. Expression assays revealed that FaTHSFA2a and FaTHSFB1a expression was induced by heat shock and correlated well with elevated ambient temperatures. Overexpression of FaTHSFA2a and FaTHSFB1a resulted in the activation of their downstream stress-associated genes, and notably enhanced the thermotolerance of transgenic Arabidopsis plants. Besides, both FaTHSFA2a and FaTHSFB1a fusion proteins localized in the nucleus, indicating their similar subcellular distributions as transcription factors. Our yeast one-hybrid assay suggested that FaTHSFA2a has trans-activation activity, whereas FaTHSFB1a expresses trans-repression function. Altogether, our annotated transcriptome sequences provide a beneficial resource for identifying most genes expressed in octoploid strawberry. Furthermore, HSF studies revealed the possible insights into the molecular mechanisms of thermotolerance, thus rendering valuable molecular breeding to improve the tolerance of strawberry in response to high-temperature stress. View Full-Text
Keywords: octoploid cultivated strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa Duch. cv. Toyonoka); heat shock transcription factor; heat stress; Illumina sequencing; transcriptome; thermotolerance octoploid cultivated strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa Duch. cv. Toyonoka); heat shock transcription factor; heat stress; Illumina sequencing; transcriptome; thermotolerance
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MDPI and ACS Style

Liao, W.-Y.; Lin, L.-F.; Jheng, J.-L.; Wang, C.-C.; Yang, J.-H.; Chou, M.-L. Identification of Heat Shock Transcription Factor Genes Involved in Thermotolerance of Octoploid Cultivated Strawberry. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17, 2130.

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