Special Issue "Genetic Regulation of Abiotic Stress Responses"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2017).
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Interests: Plant-Environment Adaptation; Plant Stress Physiology and Biochemistry
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
In order to thrive, plants require optimal environmental conditions. Changes in environmental variables, such as temperature, soil and air quality or light levels, are bound to affect species reproduction and survival. In particular, the predicted increase in temperature, alteration of rain patterns, and extreme weather events across the globe may further impact plant growth and agriculture productivity worldwide. The impact of detrimental environmental conditions on plant growth, productivity and nutrient value are important parameters that are constantly monitored and studied to implement the development of new-generation crops able to feed the world´s burgeoning population.
Though a great deal of research has been done in the field of crop genetics, only limited success in producing abiotic-stress-tolerant cultivars has been achieved thus far. Some of the reasons behind these hardships include the complexity of the traits, as well as the complexity of genetic regulatory networks. The ‘gene regulatory network’ concept refers to sets of interacting genes that contribute to control specific cell functions, crucial in plant development and response to environmental stresses. When considering genes linked to abiotic stress tolerance, several classes can be underlined, mainly (i) genes involved in transcriptional control and signaling cascades, (ii) genes with protective roles at the levels of membranes, (iii) genes involved in the transport of metabolites, etc. However, in addition to the so called ‘regulatory genes’, there are other factors that contribute to the complexity of the regulatory processes, among which the epigenetic modifications, posttranscriptional and posttranslational processing, protein–DNA and protein–protein interactions, are just some of them. In recent years, the study of large-scale gene regulatory networks was made possible due to the development of high-throughput ‘omics’ technologies. The use of high-throughput methods for the study of large numbers of genes, in parallel with the networks of gene regulation, can provide essential clues to their biological functions. In addition, the information on gene profiling can be further integrated with protein expression data to gain a more informative model on how all the parts of a biological system work together. Conclusive information about alterations in gene expression levels can be gained by analyzing the qualitative and quantitative changes of messenger RNAs, proteins and metabolites. Hence, within this complex context, deciphering genetic regulation and genetic regulatory networks in the frame of extreme environmental cues, to further develop plants with drought and temperature tolerance, water-use efficiency, or resistance to pathogens, is crucial from both the agricultural and economic points of view.
This Special Issue focuses on the latest discoveries in the field of genetic regulatory networks and their impact on plant abiotic stress biology. Studies on transgenic plants, aiming to unravel gene functions and regulatory networks are most encouraged. In addition to model species, information retrieved from economically-relevant species is essential to drive agricultural development towards sustainable practices to improve crop performance under adverse environmental conditions. Authors are invited to contribute with original research articles, research notes, as well as review articles with the common aim to illustrate and stimulate the efforts undertaken to decipher the regulatory mechanisms underlying plant resilience to environmental stresses. Contributions to be included in this Special Issue are expected to help potential readers grasp how plants may better cope with abiotic stress conditions.
Potential topics include, but are not limited to:
- Molecular mechanisms of abiotic stress tolerance in plants, especially modulation of gene networks under various abiotic stresses
- Genetic engineering approaches and modern genome editing for abiotic stress tolerance
- Modelling and analysis of regulatory gene networks involved in plant abiotic stress responses
- Relevance of transcription factors and signaling cascades in abiotic stress response
- Relevance of posttranscriptional and posttranslational modifications in abiotic stress response
- Chromatin remodeling, DNA damage, repair and signaling pathways in plants under abiotic stresses
- Functional genomics, proteomics and metabolomics approaches to study the regulatory aspects of plant abiotic stress responses
- Epigenetics and the regulation plant’s abiotic stress response
- Emerging model systems for genetic regulatory networks under abiotic stress response
Dr. Sarvajeet Singh Gill
Dr. Naser A. Anjum
Dr. Anca Macovei
Dr. Juan Francisco Jimenez Bremont
Dr. Ritu Gill
Dr. Narendra Tuteja
Manuscript Submission Information
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