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Open AccessArticle

The Progression of Xylem Vessel Cell Differentiation is Dependent on the Activity Level of VND7 in Arabidopsis thaliana

1
Division of Biological Science, Graduate School of Science and Technology, Nara Institute of Science and Technology, Ikoma 630-0192, Japan
2
International Research Organization for Advanced Science and Technology, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto 860-8555, Japan
3
Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Applied Biological Science, Tokyo University of Science, Noda 278-8510, Japan
4
Department of Integrated Biosciences, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Kashiwa 277-8562, Japan
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Current address: Ritsumeikan Global Innovation Research Organization, Ritsumeikan University, Kusatsu 525-8577, Japan.
Current address: Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, Osaka University, Toyonaka 560-0043, Japan.
Plants 2020, 9(1), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9010039
Received: 28 November 2019 / Revised: 23 December 2019 / Accepted: 24 December 2019 / Published: 25 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Systems and Application)
Xylem vessels are important for water conduction in vascular plants. The VASCULAR-RELATED NAC-DOMAIN (VND) family proteins, master regulators of xylem vessel cell differentiation in Arabidopsis thaliana, can upregulate a set of genes required for xylem vessel cell differentiation, including those involved in secondary cell wall (SCW) formation and programmed cell death (PCD); however, it is not fully understood how VND activity levels influence these processes. Here, we examined the Arabidopsis VND7-VP16-GR line, in which VND7 activity is post-translationally activated by treatments with different concentrations of dexamethasone (DEX), a synthetic glucocorticoid. Our observations showed that 1 nM DEX induced weak SCW deposition, but not PCD, whereas 10 or 100 nM DEX induced both SCW deposition and PCD. The decreased chlorophyll contents and SCW deposition were apparent after 24 h of 100 nM DEX treatment, but became evident only after 48 h of 10 nM DEX treatment. Moreover, the lower DEX concentrations delayed the upregulation of VND7 downstream genes, and decreased their induction levels. They collectively suggest that the regulation of VND activity is important not only to initiate xylem vessel cell differentiation, but also regulate the quality of the xylem vessels through VND-activity-dependent upregulation of the PCD- and SCW-related genes. View Full-Text
Keywords: VASCULAR-RELATED NAC-DOMAIN7; xylem vessel cell; programmed cell death; secondary cell wall; transcriptional regulation; Arabidopsis thaliana VASCULAR-RELATED NAC-DOMAIN7; xylem vessel cell; programmed cell death; secondary cell wall; transcriptional regulation; Arabidopsis thaliana
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Hirai, R.; Higaki, T.; Takenaka, Y.; Sakamoto, Y.; Hasegawa, J.; Matsunaga, S.; Demura, T.; Ohtani, M. The Progression of Xylem Vessel Cell Differentiation is Dependent on the Activity Level of VND7 in Arabidopsis thaliana. Plants 2020, 9, 39.

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