Abstract Detail



Life without water: evolution and adaptation of xeric plants

VanBuren, Robert [1], Pardo, Jeremy [2], Wai, Ching Man [2].

Convergent evolution of desiccation tolerance across land plants.

Resurrection plants desiccate during periods of prolonged drought stress, then resume normal cellular metabolism upon water availability. Desiccation tolerance is observed in most land plants lineages, and a shared set of metabolic, physiologic, and morphological changes are conserved across resurrection plants. This suggests desiccation tolerance arose convergently through rewiring similar pathways. We utilize comparative genomics approaches in lineages with closely related desiccation tolerant and sensitive species to identify core sets of genes and regulatory elements associated with desiccation tolerance. This includes collecting parallel metabolite, physiological, and gene expression datasets for sensitive and tolerant species. These comparable datasets are used to construct differential gene co-expression networks to identify desiccation associated pathway rewiring. Using this framework, we identified a shared set of pathways that are uniquely rewired during desiccation, but have no association with typical drought responses. We also identified a single gene family that is dramatically expanded in all resurrection plants compared to desiccation sensitive species. This gene family of early light induced proteins (ELIPs) is universally upregulated during desiccation in all surveyed resurrection plants and may play a role in protecting against photooxidative damage of the photosynthetic apparatus during prolonged dehydration.  Together, this suggests a combination of network rewiring and localized gene duplication spurred the evolution of desiccation tolerance in land plants.


1 - Michigan State University, Horticultue, 1066 Bogue St, Room A288, East Lansing, MI, 48824, United States
2 - Michigan State University, 1066 Bogue St, Room A288, East Lansing, MI, 48824, United States

Keywords:
none specified

Presentation Type: Symposium Presentation
Number:
Abstract ID:331
Candidate for Awards:None


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