Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses

A special issue of Plants (ISSN 2223-7747). This special issue belongs to the section "Plant Genetics, Genomics and Biotechnology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 June 2023) | Viewed by 34039

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Guest Editor
1. State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology in Arid Areas, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
2. College of Agronomy, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
Interests: fatty acids biosynthesis; abiotic stress; seed development
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Guest Editor
College of Agriculture and Biotechnology, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China
Interests: functional genomics of brassicas; germplasm of rapeseed; genome editing technologies
1. State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology in Arid Areas, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
2. College of Agronomy, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
Interests: synergistic improvement of rapeseed quality and abiotic stress resistance

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The studies on mechanisms of crop stress physiology and quality formation are an important basis for breeding high-quality and stress-resistant varieties. Changes in physical, chemical, and biological environmental factors in the nature all have impacts on the processes of crop physiology, biochemistry, and growth and development. Moreover, global climate change is leading to a frequent occurrence of extreme climates, which puts forward higher requirements for the adaptability of crops to biotic and abiotic stresses. On the other hand, crop adversity adaptability is closely related to the quality of agricultural products. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms that crops use to respond to environmental changes is of great significance to improve their quality. In view of this basic proposition, this Special Issue will select and publish related research papers (or reviews) on topics including rice, wheat, cotton, barley, rapeseed, soya bean, corn, and vegetables. The contents are very diverse, reflecting the active and meaningful explorations carried out by scholars at home and abroad in order to achieve the goal of high-quality and stress-resistant breeding.

Prof. Dr. Mingxun Chen
Prof. Dr. Lixi Jiang
Dr. Yuan Guo
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • crop quality
  • crop physiology
  • crop breeding
  • crop improvement
  • adversity stress
  • stress adaptation
  • stress tolerance
  • resistance mechanism
  • fatty acids
  • anthocyanins
  • melatonin
  • plant biotechnology
  • molecular biology
  • gene expression

Published Papers (17 papers)

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21 pages, 4308 KiB  
Article
Comparison of Salt Stress Tolerance among Two Leaf and Six Grain Cultivars of Amaranthus cruentus L.
by Adrien Luyckx, Stanley Lutts and Muriel Quinet
Plants 2023, 12(18), 3310; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12183310 - 19 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1188
Abstract
Amaranths (Amaranthus L.) are multi-use crop species renowned for their nutritional quality and their tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses. Since the soil salinity of croplands is a growing problem worldwide, we tested the salinity tolerance of six grain and two leaf [...] Read more.
Amaranths (Amaranthus L.) are multi-use crop species renowned for their nutritional quality and their tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses. Since the soil salinity of croplands is a growing problem worldwide, we tested the salinity tolerance of six grain and two leaf cultivars of Amaranthus cruentus L. The plants were grown for 53 days under hydroponic conditions at 0, 50 and 100 mM NaCl. We investigated the growth rate, photosynthetic activity, mineral content, pigments and biochemical compounds involved in oxidative stress. Although 100 mM NaCl always decreased biomass production, we highlighted Don Leon and K91 as tolerant cultivars under moderate salt stress (50 mM NaCl). Under salinity, sodium accumulated more in the shoots than in the roots, particularly in the stems. Sodium accumulation in the plants decreased the net photosynthetic rate, transpiration rate and stomatal conductance but increased water use efficiency, and it decreased chlorophyll, betalain and polyphenol content in the leaves. It also decreased the foliar content of calcium, magnesium and potassium but not the iron and zinc content. The physiological parameters responded differently to sodium accumulation depending on the cultivar, suggesting a different relative importance of ionic and osmotic phases of salt stress among cultivars. Our results allowed us to identify the morpho-physiological traits of the cultivars with different salt tolerance levels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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12 pages, 2229 KiB  
Article
Linum usitatissimum AccD Enhances Seed Fatty Acid Accumulation and Tolerance to Environmental Stresses during Seed Germination in Arabidopsis thaliana
by Rui Du, Xinye Li, Huan Hu, Yu Zhao, Mingxun Chen and Zijin Liu
Plants 2023, 12(17), 3100; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12173100 - 29 Aug 2023
Viewed by 975
Abstract
Flax (Linum usitatissimum L.), as an important oil-producing crop, is widely distributed throughout the world, and its seeds are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids (FAs). Previous studies have revealed that Arabidopsis thaliana ACETYL-CoA CARBOXYLASE (AtACCase) is vital for FA biosynthesis. However, the [...] Read more.
Flax (Linum usitatissimum L.), as an important oil-producing crop, is widely distributed throughout the world, and its seeds are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids (FAs). Previous studies have revealed that Arabidopsis thaliana ACETYL-CoA CARBOXYLASE (AtACCase) is vital for FA biosynthesis. However, the functions of L. usitatissimum AccD (LuAccD) on FA accumulation and seed germination remain unclear. In the present study, we cloned the LuAccD coding sequence from the flax cultivar ‘Longya 10’, identified conserved protein domains, and performed a phylogenetic analysis to elucidate its relationship with homologs from a range of plant species. Ectopic expression of LuAccD in A. thaliana wild-type background enhanced seed FA accumulation without altering seed morphological characteristics, including seed size, 1000-seed weight, and seed coat color. Consistently, the expression of key genes involved in FA biosynthesis was greatly up-regulated in the developing seeds of LuAccD overexpression lines. Additionally, we demonstrated that LuAccD acts as a positive regulator of salt and mannitol tolerance during seed germination in A. thaliana. These results provide important insights into the functions of LuAccD, which facilitates the oil quantity and abiotic stress tolerance of oil-producing crops through genetic manipulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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20 pages, 4416 KiB  
Article
Does Potassium Modify the Response of Zinnia (Zinnia elegans Jacq.) to Long-Term Salinity?
by Hanna Bandurska, Włodzimierz Breś, Małgorzata Zielezińska and Elżbieta Mieloszyk
Plants 2023, 12(7), 1439; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12071439 - 24 Mar 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1233
Abstract
Salinity is one of the major abiotic stress factors hindering crop production, including ornamental flowering plants. The present study examined the response to salt stress of Zinnia elegans ‘Lilliput’ supplemented with basic (150 mg·dm−3) and enhanced (300 mg·dm−3) potassium [...] Read more.
Salinity is one of the major abiotic stress factors hindering crop production, including ornamental flowering plants. The present study examined the response to salt stress of Zinnia elegans ‘Lilliput’ supplemented with basic (150 mg·dm−3) and enhanced (300 mg·dm−3) potassium doses. Stress was imposed by adding 0.96 and 1.98 g of NaCl per dm−3 of the substrate. The substrate’s electrical conductivity was 1.1 and 2.3 dS·m−1 for lower potassium levels and 1.2 and 2.4 dS·m−1 for higher potassium levels. Salt stress caused a significant and dose-dependent reduction in leaf RWC, increased foliar Na and Cl concentrations, and reduced K. About 15% and 25% of cell membrane injury at lower and higher NaCl doses, respectively, were accompanied by only slight chlorophyll reduction. Salt stress-induced proline increase was accompanied by increased P5CS activity and decreased PDH activity. More than a 25% reduction in most growth parameters at EC 1.1–1.2 dS·m−1 but only a slight decrease in chlorophyll and a 25% reduction in the decorative value (number of flowers produced, flower diameter) only at EC 2.3–2.4 dS·m−1 were found. Salt stress-induced leaf area reduction was accompanied by increased cell wall lignification. An enhanced potassium dose caused a reduction in leaf Na and Cl concentrations and a slight increase in K. It was also effective in membrane injury reduction and proline accumulation. Increasing the dose of potassium did not improve growth and flowering parameters but affected the lignification of the leaf cell walls, which may have resulted in growth retardation. Zinnia elegans ‘Lilliput’ may be considered sensitive to long-term salt stress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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15 pages, 7172 KiB  
Article
Genome-Wide Identification and Expression Profiling of Glutathione S-Transferase Gene Family in Foxtail Millet (Setaria italica L.)
by Linlin Wang, Hongbo Fu, Juan Zhao, Jiagang Wang, Shuqi Dong, Xiangyang Yuan, Xiaorui Li and Mingxun Chen
Plants 2023, 12(5), 1138; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12051138 - 2 Mar 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1682
Abstract
Glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) are a critical superfamily of multifunctional enzymes in plants. As a ligand or binding protein, GSTs regulate plant growth and development and detoxification. Foxtail millet (Setaria italica (L.) P. Beauv) could respond to abiotic stresses through a [...] Read more.
Glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) are a critical superfamily of multifunctional enzymes in plants. As a ligand or binding protein, GSTs regulate plant growth and development and detoxification. Foxtail millet (Setaria italica (L.) P. Beauv) could respond to abiotic stresses through a highly complex multi-gene regulatory network in which the GST family is also involved. However, GST genes have been scarcely studied in foxtail millet. Genome-wide identification and expression characteristics analysis of the foxtail millet GST gene family were conducted by biological information technology. The results showed that 73 GST genes (SiGSTs) were identified in the foxtail millet genome and were divided into seven classes. The chromosome localization results showed uneven distribution of GSTs on the seven chromosomes. There were 30 tandem duplication gene pairs belonging to 11 clusters. Only one pair of SiGSTU1 and SiGSTU23 were identified as fragment duplication genes. A total of ten conserved motifs were identified in the GST family of foxtail millet. The gene structure of SiGSTs is relatively conservative, but the number and length of exons of each gene are still different. The cis-acting elements in the promoter region of 73 SiGST genes showed that 94.5% of SiGST genes possessed defense and stress-responsive elements. The expression profiles of 37 SiGST genes covering 21 tissues suggested that most SiGST genes were expressed in multiple organs and were highly expressed in roots and leaves. By qPCR analysis, we found that 21 SiGST genes were responsive to abiotic stresses and abscisic acid (ABA). Taken together, this study provides a theoretical basis for identifying foxtail millet GST family information and improving their responses to different stresses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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17 pages, 2344 KiB  
Article
Unexpected Effects of Sulfate and Sodium Chloride Application on Yield Qualitative Characteristics and Symmetry Indicators of Hard and Soft Wheat Kernels
by Tatiana S. Aniskina, Ekaterina N. Baranova, Svyatoslav V. Lebedev, Nelli S. Reger, Ishen N. Besaliev, Alexander A. Panfilov, Viktoriya A. Kryuchkova and Alexander A. Gulevich
Plants 2023, 12(5), 980; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12050980 - 21 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1381
Abstract
The heterogeneity of grain quality can lead to limited predictability of qualitative and quantitative characteristics of the wheat yield, especially with an increase in the importance of drought and salinity caused by climate change. This study was undertaken with the aim of creating [...] Read more.
The heterogeneity of grain quality can lead to limited predictability of qualitative and quantitative characteristics of the wheat yield, especially with an increase in the importance of drought and salinity caused by climate change. This study was undertaken with the aim of creating basic tools for phenotyping and assessing the sensitivity of genotypes to salt effects at the level of some wheat kernel attributes. The study considers 36 variants of the experiment, including four wheat cultivars—Zolotaya, Ulyanovskaya 105, Orenburgskaya 10, Orenburgskaya 23; three treatment variants—control (without salt) and two salts exposure (NaCl at a concentration of 1.1 g L−1 and Na2SO4 at a concentration of 0.4 g L−1); as well as three options for the arrangement of kernels in a simple spikelet—left, middle, and right. It has been established that the salt exposure had a positive effect on the percentage of kernel fulfilling in the cultivars Zolotaya, Ulyanovskaya 105, and Orenburgskaya 23 compared to control. The kernels of the Orenburgskaya 10 variety matured better in the experiment with Na2SO4 exposure, while the control variant and NaCl gave the same effect. When exposed to NaCl, significantly greater values of weight, transverse section area, and transverse section perimeter of the kernel were noted in the cv Zolotaya and Ulyanovskaya 105. Cv Orenburgskaya 10 responded positively to the use of Na2SO4. This salt caused an increase in the area, length, and width of the kernel. The fluctuating asymmetry of the left, middle, and right kernels in the spikelet was calculated. In the cv Orenburgskaya 23 the salts affected only the kernel perimeter among parameters examined. The indicators of the general (fluctuating) asymmetry were lower in the experiments with the use of salts, i.e., kernels were more symmetrical than in the control variant, both for the cultivar as a whole and when compared taking into account the kernel location in spikelet. However, this result was unexpected, since salt stress inhibited a number of morphological parameters: the number and average length of embryonic, adventitious, and nodal roots, flag leaf area, plant height, dry biomass accumulation, and plant productivity indicators. The study showed that low concentrations of salts can positively affect the fulfilling of kernels (the absence of a cavity inside the kernel) and the symmetry of the left and right sides of the kernel. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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22 pages, 4554 KiB  
Article
Foliar Application of Oil Palm Wood Vinegar Enhances Pandanus amaryllifolius Tolerance under Drought Stress
by Muhammad Asyraf Mohd Amnan, Wee Fei Aaron Teo, Wan Mohd Aizat, Fiqri Dizar Khaidizar and Boon Chin Tan
Plants 2023, 12(4), 785; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040785 - 9 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2818
Abstract
Drought stress severely threatens plant growth, yield and survivability. Wood vinegar, formed by the condensation of smoke produced during biochar production, has been shown to promote plant growth and enhance stress tolerance. They have now been recognized as a sustainable alternative and are [...] Read more.
Drought stress severely threatens plant growth, yield and survivability. Wood vinegar, formed by the condensation of smoke produced during biochar production, has been shown to promote plant growth and enhance stress tolerance. They have now been recognized as a sustainable alternative and are frequently used exogenously to support plants coping with environmental stress. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of oil palm wood vinegar (OPWV) in mitigating the adverse effects of drought stress on Pandanus amaryllifolius. The optimal concentrations and frequencies of OPWV application were determined before the drought treatment. The results showed that the imposed drought stress negatively affected the plant growth parameters but applying OPWV at 1:500 dilution at 3-day intervals for 12 days increased its tolerance. These include increased leaf relative water content, root-to-shoot ratio, relative stem circumference, chlorophyll pigments and antioxidant enzyme activities. In contrast, the drought-stressed plants treated with OPWV showed decreased relative electrolyte leakage, hydrogen peroxide, proline, malondialdehyde, and enhanced drought-responsive gene expressions, such as HSP70, GAPDH, and Thau, while ENO and β-Fruc were reduced. These biostimulatory effects of OPWV might be due to several antioxidant compounds, such as anthranilic acid, tetrasiloxane, syringol, guaiacol, and catechol. Altogether, our results showed the effectiveness of OPWV in alleviating the adverse effects of drought stress, and as such, OPWV could be potentially applied in agriculture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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19 pages, 4961 KiB  
Article
Genome-Wide Characterization of the Sulfate Transporter Gene Family in Oilseed Crops: Camelina sativa and Brassica napus
by Parviz Heidari, Soosan Hasanzadeh, Sahar Faraji, Sezai Ercisli and Freddy Mora-Poblete
Plants 2023, 12(3), 628; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12030628 - 31 Jan 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1817
Abstract
Sulfate transporters (SULTRs) are responsible for the uptake of sulfate (SO42−) ions in the rhizosphere by roots and their distribution to plant organs. In this study, SULTR family members in the genomes of two oilseed crops (Camelina sativa and [...] Read more.
Sulfate transporters (SULTRs) are responsible for the uptake of sulfate (SO42−) ions in the rhizosphere by roots and their distribution to plant organs. In this study, SULTR family members in the genomes of two oilseed crops (Camelina sativa and Brassica napus) were identified and characterized based on their sequence structures, duplication events, phylogenetic relationships, phosphorylation sites, and expression levels. In total, 36 and 45 putative SULTR genes were recognized in the genomes of C. sativa and B. napus, respectively. SULTR proteins were predicted to be basophilic proteins with low hydrophilicity in both studied species. According to the observed phylogenetic relationships, we divided the SULTRs into five groups, out of which the SULTR 3 group showed the highest variation. Additionally, several duplication events were observed between the SULTRs. The first duplication event occurred approximately five million years ago between three SULTR 3.1 genes in C. sativa. Furthermore, two subunits were identified in the 3D structures of the SULTRs, which demonstrated that the active binding sites differed between C. sativa and B. napus. According to the available RNA-seq data, the SULTRs showed diverse expression levels in tissues and diverse responses to stimuli. SULTR 3 was expressed in all tissues. SULTR 3.1 was more upregulated in response to abiotic stresses in C. sativa, while SULTR 3.3 and SULTR 2.1 were upregulated in B. napus. Furthermore, SULTR 3 and SULTR 4.1 were upregulated in response to biotic stresses in B. napus. Additionally, the qPCR data showed that the SULTRs in C. sativa were involved in the plant’s response to salinity. Based on the distribution of cis-regulatory elements in the promoter region, we speculated that SULTRs might be controlled by phytohormones, such as ABA and MeJA. Therefore, it seems likely that SULTR genes in C. sativa have been more heavily influenced by evolutionary processes and have acquired further diversity. The results reveal new insights of the structures and functions of SULTRs in oilseed crops. However, further analyses, related to functional studies, are needed to uncover the role of SULTRs in the plants’ development and growth processes, as well as in their response to stimuli. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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14 pages, 2285 KiB  
Article
Brassica napus Transcription Factor Bna.A07.WRKY70 Negatively Regulates Leaf Senescence in Arabidopsis thaliana
by Tiantian Liu, Yuxin Li, Chang Wang, Da Zhang, Jiajia Liu, Mingyuan He, Mingxun Chen and Yuan Guo
Plants 2023, 12(2), 347; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020347 - 11 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1720
Abstract
Leaf senescence is the final stage of leaf development and is essential for storage properties and crop productivity. WRKY transcription factors have been revealed to play crucial roles in several biological processes during plant growth and development, especially in leaf senescence. However, the [...] Read more.
Leaf senescence is the final stage of leaf development and is essential for storage properties and crop productivity. WRKY transcription factors have been revealed to play crucial roles in several biological processes during plant growth and development, especially in leaf senescence. However, the functions of Brassica napus WRKY transcription factors in leaf senescence remain unclear. In the present study, Bna.A07.WRKY70, one paralogue of Brassica napus WRKY70, was cloned from the B. napus cultivar “Zhongshuang11 (ZS11)”. We found that Bna.A07.WRKY70 contains a highly conserved WRKY domain and is most closely related to Arabidopsis thaliana WRKY70. The subcellular localization and transcriptional self-activation assays indicated that Bna.A07.WRKY70 functions as a transcription factor. Meanwhile, RT-qPCR and promoter-GUS analysis showed that Bna.A07.WRKY70 is predominantly expressed in the leaves of B. napus and rosette leaves of A. thaliana. In addition, our results demonstrated that ectopic expression of Bna.A07.WRKY70 in A. thaliana wrky70 mutants could restore the senescence phenotypes to wild-type levels. Consistently, the expression levels of three senescence-related marker genes of wrky70 mutants were restored to wild-type levels by ectopic expression of Bna.A07.WRKY70. These findings improve our understanding of the function of Bna.A07.WRKY70 in B. napus and provide a novel strategy for breeding the new stay-green cultivars in rapeseed through genetic manipulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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14 pages, 3467 KiB  
Article
Exogenous Phytohormones and Fertilizers Enhance Jatropha curcas L. Growth through the Regulation of Physiological, Morphological, and Biochemical Parameters
by Rahmatullah Jan, Murtaza Khan, Muhammad Adnan, Sajjad Asaf, Saleem Asif, Kyung-Min Kim and Waheed Murad
Plants 2022, 11(24), 3584; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11243584 - 19 Dec 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2016
Abstract
Jatropha curcas L. is a perennial plant, that emerged as a biodiesel crop attracting the great interest of researchers. However, it is considered a semi-wild plant and needed to apply crop-improving practices to enhance its full yield potential. This study was conducted to [...] Read more.
Jatropha curcas L. is a perennial plant, that emerged as a biodiesel crop attracting the great interest of researchers. However, it is considered a semi-wild plant and needed to apply crop-improving practices to enhance its full yield potential. This study was conducted to improve the growth and development of the J. curcas plant by exogenous application of Gibberellic acid (GA), indole acetic acid (IAA), and fertilizer (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium (NPK)). The experiment was conducted in pots in triplicate and 100 ppm and 250 ppm of GA and IAA were applied separately while NPK was applied in two levels (30 and 60 g/pot). The results revealed a significant difference in growth parameters with the application of hormones and fertilizer. The highest shoot length (47%), root length (63%), root fresh weight (72%), and root dry weight (172%) were shown by plants treated with GA 250 ppm. While plants treated with NPK 60 g showed the highest increases in shoot fresh weight and shoot dry weight compared to control plants. The highest increase in leaves number (274%) and branches number (266%) were shown by the plants treated with GA 100 ppm and GA 250 ppm, respectively, while GA 250 ppm and IAA 250 ppm highly increased stem diameter (123%) and stem diameter was also shown by GA 250 ppm-treated plants. NPK 60 g highly increased proximate composition (protein content, carbohydrate, fat, moisture content, and ash content) compare with hormones and control plants. Our results concluded the optimized concentration of IAA, GA, and NPK significantly increases J. curcas growth vigor. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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20 pages, 4662 KiB  
Article
Induction of Male Sterility by Targeted Mutation of a Restorer-of-Fertility Gene with CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated Genome Editing in Brassica napus L.
by Zunaira Farooq, Muhammad Nouman Riaz, Muhammad Shoaib Farooq, Yifan Li, Huadong Wang, Mayra Ahmad, Jinxing Tu, Chaozhi Ma, Cheng Dai, Jing Wen, Jinxiong Shen, Tingdong Fu, Shouping Yang, Benqi Wang and Bin Yi
Plants 2022, 11(24), 3501; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11243501 - 13 Dec 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2208
Abstract
Brassica napus L. (canola, oil seed rape) is one of the world’s most important oil seed crops. In the last four decades, the discovery of cytoplasmic male-sterility (CMS) systems and the restoration of fertility (Rf) genes in B. napus has improved [...] Read more.
Brassica napus L. (canola, oil seed rape) is one of the world’s most important oil seed crops. In the last four decades, the discovery of cytoplasmic male-sterility (CMS) systems and the restoration of fertility (Rf) genes in B. napus has improved the crop traits by heterosis. The homologs of Rf genes, known as the restoration of fertility-like (RFL) genes, have also gained importance because of their similarities with Rf genes. Such as a high non-synonymous/synonymous codon replacement ratio (dN/dS), autonomous gene duplications, and a possible engrossment in fertility restoration. B. napus contains 53 RFL genes on chromosomes A9 and C8. Our research aims to study the function of BnaRFL11 in fertility restoration using the CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing technique. A total of 88/108 (81.48%) T0 lines, and for T1, 110/145 (75%) lines carried T-DNA insertions. Stable mutations were detected in the T0 and T1 generations, with an average allelic mutation transmission rate of 81%. We used CRISPR-P software to detect off-target 50 plants sequenced from the T0 generation that showed no off-target mutation, signifying that if the designed sgRNA is specific for the target, the off-target effects are negligible. We also concluded that the mutagenic competence of the designed sgRNAs mediated by U6-26 and U6-29 ranged widely from 31% to 96%. The phenotypic analysis of bnarfl11 revealed defects in the floral structure, leaf size, branch number, and seed production. We discovered a significant difference between the sterile line and fertile line flower development after using a stereomicroscope and scanning electron microscope. The pollen visibility test showed that the pollen grain had utterly degenerated. The cytological observations of homozygous mutant plants showed an anther abortion stage similar to nap-CMS, with a Orf222, Orf139, Ap3, and nad5c gene upregulation. The bnarfl11 shows vegetative defects, including fewer branches and a reduced leaf size, suggesting that PPR-encoding genes are essential for the plants’ vegetative and reproductive growth. Our results demonstrated that BnaRFL11 has a possible role in fertility restoration. The current study’s findings suggest that CRISPR/Cas9 mutations may divulge the functions of genes in polyploid species and provide agronomically desirable traits through a targeted mutation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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18 pages, 2606 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of the Impacts of Potassium Bicarbonate, Moringa oleifera Seed Extract, and Bacillus subtilis on Sugar Beet Powdery Mildew
by Baher A. El-Nogoumy, Mohamed A. Salem, Gabr A. El-Kot, Salem Hamden, Mohamed D. Sehsah, Abeer H. Makhlouf and Yasser Nehela
Plants 2022, 11(23), 3258; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11233258 - 27 Nov 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2162
Abstract
Powdery mildew disease, caused by Erysiphe betae, is one of the most threatening diseases on sugar beet plants worldwide. It causes a great loss in the root yield, sugar percentage, and quality of produced sugar. In the current study, we aimed to [...] Read more.
Powdery mildew disease, caused by Erysiphe betae, is one of the most threatening diseases on sugar beet plants worldwide. It causes a great loss in the root yield, sugar percentage, and quality of produced sugar. In the current study, we aimed to evaluate the susceptibility of 25 sugar beet cultivars to infection with powdery mildew disease under Egyptian conditions. Moreover, we evaluated the impacts of three eco-friendly materials, including potassium bicarbonate (KHCO3; at 5 and 10 g L−1), Moringa oleifera seed extract (25 and 50 g L−1), and the biocontrol agent, Bacillus subtilis (108 cell suspension) against E. betae in two successive seasons 2020 and 2021. Our findings showed that there were significant differences between these 25 cultivars in their susceptibility to the disease under study. Using the detached leaves technique in vitro, B. subtilis showed strong antifungal activity against E. betae. Moreover, both concentrations of KHCO3 and moringa seed extract significantly reduced the disease severity. Under field conditions, tested treatments significantly reduced the severity of powdery mildew disease and prevented E. betae from producing its conidiophores and conidia. Scanning electron microscope examination of treated leaves demonstrated the presence of the decomposition of fungal hyphae, conidiophores, conidia, and the occurrence of plasmolysis to fungal cells and spores on the surface of the leaves. Furthermore, these treatments greatly improved the percent of sucrose and soluble solids content, as well as the enzymatic activity of peroxidase, polyphenol oxidase, and phenylalanine ammonia-lyase. It is noteworthy that treatment with moringa seed extract gave the best results, followed by potassium bicarbonate, then B. subtilis cell suspension. Generally, it is recommended to use the substances used in this research to combat powdery mildew to minimize or prevent the use of chemical fungicides harmful to public health and the environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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19 pages, 3886 KiB  
Article
New Genomic Regions Identified for Resistance to Spot Blotch and Terminal Heat Stress in an Interspecific Population of Triticum aestivum and T. spelta
by Sudhir Navathe, Ajeet Kumar Pandey, Sandeep Sharma, Ramesh Chand, Vinod Kumar Mishra, Dinesh Kumar, Sarika Jaiswal, Mir Asif Iquebal, Velu Govindan, Arun Kumar Joshi and Pawan Kumar Singh
Plants 2022, 11(21), 2987; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11212987 - 5 Nov 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1703
Abstract
Wheat is one of the most widely grown and consumed food crops in the world. Spot blotch and terminal heat stress are the two significant constraints mainly in the Indo–Gangetic plains of South Asia. The study was undertaken using 185 recombinant lines (RILs) [...] Read more.
Wheat is one of the most widely grown and consumed food crops in the world. Spot blotch and terminal heat stress are the two significant constraints mainly in the Indo–Gangetic plains of South Asia. The study was undertaken using 185 recombinant lines (RILs) derived from the interspecific hybridization of ‘Triticum aestivum (HUW234) × T. spelta (H+26)’ to reveal genomic regions associated with tolerance to combined stress to spot blotch and terminal heat. Different physiological (NDVI, canopy temperature, leaf chlorophyll) and grain traits (TGW, grain size) were observed under stressed (spot blotch, terminal heat) and non-stressed environments. The mean maturity duration of RILs under combined stress was reduced by 12 days, whereas the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) was 46.03%. Similarly, the grain size was depleted under combined stress by 32.23% and thousand kernel weight (TKW) by 27.56% due to spot blotch and terminal heat stress, respectively. The genetic analysis using 6734 SNP markers identified 37 significant loci for the area under the disease progress curve (AUDPC) and NDVI. The genome-wide functional annotation of the SNP markers revealed gene functions such as plant chitinases, NB-ARC and NBS-LRR, and the peroxidase superfamily Cytochrome P450 have a positive role in the resistance through a hypersensitive response. Zinc finger domains, cysteine protease coding gene, F-box protein, ubiquitin, and associated proteins, play a substantial role in the combined stress of spot blotch and terminal heat in bread wheat, according to genomic domains ascribed to them. The study also highlights T. speltoides as a source of resistance to spot blotch and terminal heat tolerance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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17 pages, 2988 KiB  
Article
Modulation of Photosynthesis and ROS Scavenging Response by Beneficial Bacteria in Olea europaea Plantlets under Salt Stress Conditions
by Estrella Galicia-Campos, Ana García-Villaraco Velasco, Mᵃ Belén Montero-Palmero, F. Javier Gutiérrez-Mañero and Beatriz Ramos-Solano
Plants 2022, 11(20), 2748; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11202748 - 17 Oct 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1652
Abstract
Climate change consequences for agriculture involve an increase of saline soils which results in lower crop yields due to increased oxidative stress in plants. The present study reports the use of Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria (PGPB) as a tool to modulate plant innate [...] Read more.
Climate change consequences for agriculture involve an increase of saline soils which results in lower crop yields due to increased oxidative stress in plants. The present study reports the use of Plant Growth Promoting Bacteria (PGPB) as a tool to modulate plant innate mechanisms of adaptation to water stress (salinity and drought) in one year-old olive plantlets var. Arbosana and Arbequina. Integration of external changes in plants involve changes in Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) that behave as signals to trigger plant adaptative mechanisms; however, they become toxic in high concentrations. For this reason, plants are endowed with antioxidant systems to keep ROS under control. So, the working hypothesis is that specific beneficial strains will induce a systemic response able to modulate oxidative stress and improve plant adaptation to water stress. Ten strains were assayed, evaluating changes in photosynthesis, pigments, ROS scavenging enzymes and antioxidant molecules, osmolytes and malondialdehyde, as oxidative stress marker. Photosynthesis and photosynthetic pigments were the most affected variables. Despite the specific response of each variety, the favorite targets of PGPBs to improve plant fitness were photosynthetic pigments and the antioxidant pools of glutathione and ascorbate. Our results show the potential of PGPBs to improve plant fitness modulating oxidative stress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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15 pages, 2423 KiB  
Article
Effects of Nitrogen Deficiency on the Metabolism of Organic Acids and Amino Acids in Oryza sativa
by Ling-Hua Chen, Zu-Xin Cheng, Ming Xu, Zhi-Jian Yang and Lin-Tong Yang
Plants 2022, 11(19), 2576; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11192576 - 29 Sep 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2017
Abstract
Organic acids metabolism and nitrogen (N) metabolism in rice seedlings and the relationship between them are not fully understood. In this study, rice (Oryza sativa L. ssp. Indica) variety “Huanghuazhan” was used as the experimental material, and three N levels (5 mM, [...] Read more.
Organic acids metabolism and nitrogen (N) metabolism in rice seedlings and the relationship between them are not fully understood. In this study, rice (Oryza sativa L. ssp. Indica) variety “Huanghuazhan” was used as the experimental material, and three N levels (5 mM, 1 mM, and 0 mM NH4NO3) were set by the hydroponic method for different levels of N treatment. Our results showed that the increased content of malate in rice leaves caused by reducing N level was related to the increased synthesis of malate (the activity of leaf PEPC increased)and the decreased degradation of malate (the activity of leaf NADP-ME decreased), while the increased contents of citrate and isocitrate in rice leaves caused by reducing N level might not be caused by the increased biosynthesis, but due to the decrease in degradation of citrate and isocitrate (the activities of leaf CS, ACO, and NADP-IDH decreased). The increased content of malate in rice roots caused by reducing N level might be related to the increased biosynthesis and the decreased degradation of root malate (the activities of root NAD-MDH and PEPC increased, while the activity of NADP-ME decreased). Compared to the control (5 mM NH4NO3), the increased content of citrate in rice roots caused by reducing N level might be related to the increased biosynthesis rather than the decreased degradation of citrate, due to the higher activities of CS and ACO in rice roots under 0 mM N and 1mM N treatment when compared to that of the control ones. At the same time, the increased content of isocitrate in roots was related to the increased isomerization of isocitrate (the activity of root ACO increased) and the decreased degradation of isocitrate (the activity of root NADP-IDH decreased). With the reducing N level, the activities of N metabolism-related enzymes, such as nitrate reductase (NR), glutamine synthetase (GS), and glutamate synthase (GOGAT), decreased in rice leaves and roots, resulting in the decreased contents of total free amino acids (TFAAs) and soluble proteins in rice seedlings, and finally led to the growth inhibition. Our results showed that the dynamics of organic acids metabolism caused by reducing N level were different in rice leaves and roots. In conclusion, there was a close correlation between organic acids metabolism and N metabolism in rice leaves and roots under N-limited conditions; furthermore, such a correlation was more obvious in rice leaves than that of roots. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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14 pages, 3204 KiB  
Article
Combination of Genomics, Transcriptomics Identifies Candidate Loci Related to Cold Tolerance in Dongxiang Wild Rice
by Dianwen Wang, Yulong Xiao, Hongping Chen, Cheng Huang, Ping Chen, Dazhou Chen, Wei Deng and Jilin Wang
Plants 2022, 11(18), 2329; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11182329 - 6 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1495
Abstract
Rice, a cold-sensitive crop, is a staple food for more than 50% of the world’s population. Low temperature severely compromises the growth of rice and challenges China’s food safety. Dongxiang wild rice (DXWR) is the most northerly common wild rice in China and [...] Read more.
Rice, a cold-sensitive crop, is a staple food for more than 50% of the world’s population. Low temperature severely compromises the growth of rice and challenges China’s food safety. Dongxiang wild rice (DXWR) is the most northerly common wild rice in China and has strong cold tolerance, but the genetic basis of its cold tolerance is still unclear. Here, we report quantitative trait loci (QTLs) analysis for seedling cold tolerance (SCT) using a high-density single nucleotide polymorphism linkage map in the backcross recombinant inbred lines that were derived from a cross of DXWR, and an indica cultivar, GZX49. A total of 10 putative QTLs were identified for SCT under 4 °C cold treatment, each explaining 2.0–6.8% of the phenotypic variation in this population. Furthermore, transcriptome sequencing of DXWR seedlings before and after cold treatment was performed, and 898 and 3413 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) relative to 0 h in cold-tolerant for 4 h and 12 h were identified, respectively. Gene ontology and Kyoto encyclopedia of genes and genomes (KEGG) analysis were performed on these DEGs. Using transcriptome data and genetic linkage analysis, combined with qRT-PCR, sequence comparison, and bioinformatics, LOC_Os08g04840 was putatively identified as a candidate gene for the major effect locus qSCT8. These findings provided insights into the genetic basis of SCT for the improvement of cold stress potential in rice breeding programs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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29 pages, 14893 KiB  
Article
Identification and Spatial Distribution of Bioactive Compounds in Seeds Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp. by Laser Microscopy and Tandem Mass Spectrometry
by Mayya P. Razgonova, Marina O. Burlyaeva, Yulia N. Zinchenko, Ekaterina A. Krylova, Olga A. Chunikhina, Natalia M. Ivanova, Alexander M. Zakharenko and Kirill S. Golokhvast
Plants 2022, 11(16), 2147; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11162147 - 18 Aug 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2045
Abstract
The research presents a comparative metabolomic study of extracts of Vigna unguiculata seed samples from the collection of the N.I. Vavilov All-Russian Institute of Plant Genetic Resources. Analyzed samples related to different areas of use in agricultural production, belonging to different cultivar groups [...] Read more.
The research presents a comparative metabolomic study of extracts of Vigna unguiculata seed samples from the collection of the N.I. Vavilov All-Russian Institute of Plant Genetic Resources. Analyzed samples related to different areas of use in agricultural production, belonging to different cultivar groups sesquipedalis (vegetable accessions) and unguiculata (grain accessions). Metabolome analysis was performed by liquid chromatography combined with ion trap mass spectrometry. Substances were localized in seeds using confocal and laser microscopy. As a result, 49 bioactive compounds were identified: flavonols, flavones, flavan-3-ols, anthocyanidin, phenolic acids, amino acids, monocarboxylic acids, aminobenzoic acids, fatty acids, lignans, carotenoid, sapogenins, steroids, etc. Steroidal alkaloids were identified in V. unguiculata seeds for the first time. The seed coat (palisade epidermis and parenchyma) is the richest in phenolic compounds. Comparison of seeds of varieties of different directions of use in terms of the number of bioactive substances identified revealed a significant superiority of vegetable accessions over grain ones in this indicator, 36 compounds were found in samples from cultivar group sesquipedalis, and 24 in unguiculata. The greatest variety of bioactive compounds was found in the vegetable accession k-640 from China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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Review

Jump to: Research

34 pages, 22790 KiB  
Review
Pea Breeding for Resistance to Rhizospheric Pathogens
by Osman Z. Wohor, Nicolas Rispail, Chris O. Ojiewo and Diego Rubiales
Plants 2022, 11(19), 2664; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11192664 - 10 Oct 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 4058
Abstract
Pea (Pisum sativum L.) is a grain legume widely cultivated in temperate climates. It is important in the race for food security owing to its multipurpose low-input requirement and environmental promoting traits. Pea is key in nitrogen fixation, biodiversity preservation, and nutritional [...] Read more.
Pea (Pisum sativum L.) is a grain legume widely cultivated in temperate climates. It is important in the race for food security owing to its multipurpose low-input requirement and environmental promoting traits. Pea is key in nitrogen fixation, biodiversity preservation, and nutritional functions as food and feed. Unfortunately, like most crops, pea production is constrained by several pests and diseases, of which rhizosphere disease dwellers are the most critical due to their long-term persistence in the soil and difficulty to manage. Understanding the rhizosphere environment can improve host plant root microbial association to increase yield stability and facilitate improved crop performance through breeding. Thus, the use of various germplasm and genomic resources combined with scientific collaborative efforts has contributed to improving pea resistance/cultivation against rhizospheric diseases. This improvement has been achieved through robust phenotyping, genotyping, agronomic practices, and resistance breeding. Nonetheless, resistance to rhizospheric diseases is still limited, while biological and chemical-based control strategies are unrealistic and unfavourable to the environment, respectively. Hence, there is a need to consistently scout for host plant resistance to resolve these bottlenecks. Herein, in view of these challenges, we reflect on pea breeding for resistance to diseases caused by rhizospheric pathogens, including fusarium wilt, root rots, nematode complex, and parasitic broomrape. Here, we will attempt to appraise and harmonise historical and contemporary knowledge that contributes to pea resistance breeding for soilborne disease management and discuss the way forward. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulation of Crop Quality and Stress Responses)
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