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Insights into Drought Stress Signaling in Plants and the Molecular Genetic Basis of Cotton Drought Tolerance

1
State Key Laboratory of Cotton Biology, Institute of Cotton Research (ICR), Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Anyang 455000, China
2
Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics, Pir Mehar Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi 46000, Pakistan
3
National Agriculture Research Center (NARC), Pakistan Agriculture Research Council, Islamabad 44000, Pakistan
4
Member of Plant Sciences Division, Pakistan Agricultural Council (PARC), Islamabad 44000, Pakistan
5
School of Agricultural Sciences, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou 450001, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Cells 2020, 9(1), 105; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010105
Received: 16 December 2019 / Revised: 25 December 2019 / Accepted: 28 December 2019 / Published: 31 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms of Stress Responses)
Drought stress restricts plant growth and development by altering metabolic activity and biological functions. However, plants have evolved several cellular and molecular mechanisms to overcome drought stress. Drought tolerance is a multiplex trait involving the activation of signaling mechanisms and differentially expressed molecular responses. Broadly, drought tolerance comprises two steps: stress sensing/signaling and activation of various parallel stress responses (including physiological, molecular, and biochemical mechanisms) in plants. At the cellular level, drought induces oxidative stress by overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS), ultimately causing the cell membrane to rupture and stimulating various stress signaling pathways (ROS, mitogen-activated-protein-kinase, Ca2+, and hormone-mediated signaling). Drought-induced transcription factors activation and abscisic acid concentration co-ordinate the stress signaling and responses in cotton. The key responses against drought stress, are root development, stomatal closure, photosynthesis, hormone production, and ROS scavenging. The genetic basis, quantitative trait loci and genes of cotton drought tolerance are presented as examples of genetic resources in plants. Sustainable genetic improvements could be achieved through functional genomic approaches and genome modification techniques such as the CRISPR/Cas9 system aid the characterization of genes, sorted out from stress-related candidate single nucleotide polymorphisms, quantitative trait loci, and genes. Exploration of the genetic basis for superior candidate genes linked to stress physiology can be facilitated by integrated functional genomic approaches. We propose a third-generation sequencing approach coupled with genome-wide studies and functional genomic tools, including a comparative sequenced data (transcriptomics, proteomics, and epigenomic) analysis, which offer a platform to identify and characterize novel genes. This will provide information for better understanding the complex stress cellular biology of plants. View Full-Text
Keywords: cellular stress signaling; drought stress responses; functional genomics; gene identification tools; drought tolerance; cotton molecular genetic basis; Gossypium cellular stress signaling; drought stress responses; functional genomics; gene identification tools; drought tolerance; cotton molecular genetic basis; Gossypium
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mahmood, T.; Khalid, S.; Abdullah, M.; Ahmed, Z.; Shah, M.K.N.; Ghafoor, A.; Du, X. Insights into Drought Stress Signaling in Plants and the Molecular Genetic Basis of Cotton Drought Tolerance. Cells 2020, 9, 105. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010105

AMA Style

Mahmood T, Khalid S, Abdullah M, Ahmed Z, Shah MKN, Ghafoor A, Du X. Insights into Drought Stress Signaling in Plants and the Molecular Genetic Basis of Cotton Drought Tolerance. Cells. 2020; 9(1):105. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010105

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mahmood, Tahir, Shiguftah Khalid, Muhammad Abdullah, Zubair Ahmed, Muhammad K.N. Shah, Abdul Ghafoor, and Xiongming Du. 2020. "Insights into Drought Stress Signaling in Plants and the Molecular Genetic Basis of Cotton Drought Tolerance" Cells 9, no. 1: 105. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010105

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