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Genes 2017, 8(12), 396; doi:10.3390/genes8120396

Genome-Wide Transcriptional Changes and Lipid Profile Modifications Induced by Medicago truncatula N5 Overexpression at an Early Stage of the Symbiotic Interaction with Sinorhizobium meliloti

1
Department of Biotechnology, University of Verona, 37134 Verona, Italy
2
Faculty of Science and Technology, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, 39100 Bolzano BZ, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 October 2017 / Revised: 6 December 2017 / Accepted: 11 December 2017 / Published: 19 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of the Rhizobium-Legume Symbiosis)
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Abstract

Plant lipid-transfer proteins (LTPs) are small basic secreted proteins, which are characterized by lipid-binding capacity and are putatively involved in lipid trafficking. LTPs play a role in several biological processes, including the root nodule symbiosis. In this regard, the Medicago truncatula nodulin 5 (MtN5) LTP has been proved to positively regulate the nodulation capacity, controlling rhizobial infection and nodule primordia invasion. To better define the lipid transfer protein MtN5 function during the symbiosis, we produced MtN5-downregulated and -overexpressing plants, and we analysed the transcriptomic changes occurring in the roots at an early stage of Sinorhizobium meliloti infection. We also carried out the lipid profile analysis of wild type (WT) and MtN5-overexpressing roots after rhizobia infection. The downregulation of MtN5 increased the root hair curling, an early event of rhizobia infection, and concomitantly induced changes in the expression of defence-related genes. On the other hand, MtN5 overexpression favoured the invasion of the nodules by rhizobia and determined in the roots the modulation of genes that are involved in lipid transport and metabolism as well as an increased content of lipids, especially galactolipids that characterize the symbiosome membranes. Our findings suggest the potential participation of LTPs in the synthesis and rearrangement of membranes occurring during the formation of the infection threads and the symbiosome membrane. View Full-Text
Keywords: lipid transfer proteins; root nodule symbiosis; transcriptomic analysis; lipid profile lipid transfer proteins; root nodule symbiosis; transcriptomic analysis; lipid profile
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Santi, C.; Molesini, B.; Guzzo, F.; Pii, Y.; Vitulo, N.; Pandolfini, T. Genome-Wide Transcriptional Changes and Lipid Profile Modifications Induced by Medicago truncatula N5 Overexpression at an Early Stage of the Symbiotic Interaction with Sinorhizobium meliloti. Genes 2017, 8, 396.

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