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Open AccessArticle

Ectopic Expression of Glycine max GmNAC109 Enhances Drought Tolerance and ABA Sensitivity in Arabidopsis

1
School of Biotechnology, International University—Vietnam National University HCMC, Ho Chi Minh 700000, Vietnam
2
Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Technology, Thai Nguyen University of Agriculture and Forestry, Thai Nguyen 250000, Vietnam
3
Stress Adaptation Research Unit, RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science, 1-7-22, Suehiro-cho, Tsurumi, Yokohama 230-0045, Japan
4
Institute of Research and Development, Duy Tan University, 03 Quang Trung, Da Nang, Vietnam
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Biomolecules 2019, 9(11), 714; https://doi.org/10.3390/biom9110714
Received: 12 September 2019 / Revised: 28 October 2019 / Accepted: 1 November 2019 / Published: 7 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phytohormones)
The NAC (NAM, ATAF1/2, CUC2) transcription factors are widely known for their various functions in plant development and stress tolerance. Previous studies have demonstrated that genetic engineering can be applied to enhance drought tolerance via overexpression/ectopic expression of NAC genes. In the present study, the dehydration- and drought-inducible GmNAC109 from Glycine max was ectopically expressed in Arabidopsis (GmNAC109-EX) plants to study its biological functions in mediating plant adaptation to water deficit conditions. Results revealed an improved drought tolerance in the transgenic plants, which displayed greater recovery rates by 20% to 54% than did the wild-type plants. In support of this finding, GmNAC109-EX plants exhibited lower water loss rates and decreased endogenous hydrogen peroxide production in leaf tissues under drought, as well as higher sensitivity to exogenous abscisic acid (ABA) treatment at germination and early seedling development stages. In addition, analyses of antioxidant enzymes indicated that GmNAC109-EX plants possessed stronger activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase under drought stress. These results together demonstrated that GmNAC109 acts as a positive transcriptional regulator in the ABA-signaling pathway, enabling plants to cope with adverse water deficit conditions.
Keywords: ABA; Arabidopsis; drought tolerance; ectopic expression; Glycine max; GmNAC109 ABA; Arabidopsis; drought tolerance; ectopic expression; Glycine max; GmNAC109
MDPI and ACS Style

Nguyen, N.C.; Hoang, X.L.T.; Nguyen, Q.T.; Binh, N.X.; Watanabe, Y.; Thao, N.P.; Tran, L.-S. Ectopic Expression of Glycine max GmNAC109 Enhances Drought Tolerance and ABA Sensitivity in Arabidopsis. Biomolecules 2019, 9, 714.

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