Oxidative Stress and Redox Signalling in Plants


Plants are due to their constitution unable to escape from environmental stress and are constantly at the risk of being exposed to several stress factors simultaneously that usually are associated with oxidative stress. We are presenting some genetic, molecular and physiological examples that plants functionally integrate varieties of intra‐ and intercellular signalling in response to such stresses. It is concluded that fine control of cellular redox homeostasis as a function of the interaction of hormones and reactive oxygen species (ROS) signalling is important for integrated regulation of plant defence and acclimatory responses.

Keywords: acclimation; inter‐ and intra‐cellular signalling; defense responses; phytohormones; programmed cell death; reactive oxygen species

Figure 1.

SA impairs acclimation to EEE in low light acclimated plants. (a) Relative stomatal conductance (RSC) in wild‐type leaves of rosette grown in SD treated with SA (0.4 mM) in comparison to control leaves treated with water (p<0.001***). (b) Low light (LL)‐ and high light (HL) acclimated leaves treated with 0.4 mM SA for several hours and exposed to excess light (EL; 2200±200 uE, 90 min exposure). From Mateo et al..

Figure 2.

SA disrupts redox regulation. (a) Mutants with constitutive accumulation of SA had strongly increased H2O2 levels and in SA‐deficient lines H2O2 was decreased, indicating a strong correlation between SA levels and H2O2 content in the cell. (b) NADPH‐dependent glutathione reductase (GR) activity. (a: significantly different from wt, p<0.05). From Mateo et al..

Figure 3.

Effects of lower stomata conductance and forced limitation of foliar gas exchange in lsd1 are reverted in pad4‐5/lsd1and eds1‐1/lsd1. (a) Relative stomatal conductance (RSC) and (b) NTR activity in leaves of Ws‐0, lsd1, pad4‐5/lsd1, and eds1‐1/lsd1 in short day (SD) permissive conditions (p<0.001***, p<0.05*) in lsd1 and the recovery of wild‐type phenotype in the double mutants. (c) DCF‐2 yellow‐green fluorescence (H2O2) monitored after 24 h treatment by limitation of foliar gas exchange. Runaway cell death was observed in lsd1 but not in Ws‐0 nor in pad4‐5/lsd1 and eds1‐1/lsd1 after 48 h. Representative pictures of treated leaves are shown. From Mateo et al..

Figure 4.

Limitation of gas exchange induces EEE‐CD. Representative trypan blue stained dead cells in leaves treated for 24 h with 50 μM ABA and physical restriction for 24 h of gas exchange (R.G.) (C=control).



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Further Reading

Desikan R, Hancock JT and Neill SJ (2003) Oxidative stress signalling. In: Hirt K and Shinozaki K (eds) Plant Responses to Abiotic Stress. Topics in Current Genetics, vol. 4, pp. 129–149. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer‐Verlag.

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Geisler M, Kleczkowski LA and Karpinski S (2006) A universal algorithm for genome‐wide in silico identification of biologically significant gene promoter putative cis‐regulatory‐elements; identification of new elements for reactive oxygen species and sucrose signaling in Arabidopsis. Plant Journal 45: 384–398.

Kacperska A (2004) Sensor types in signal transduction pathways in plant cells responding to abiotic stressors: do they depend on stress intensity? Physiology of Plant 122: 159–168.

Mullineaux PM, Karpinski S and Baker NR (2006) Spatial dependence for hydrogen peroxide‐directed signalling in light‐stressed plants. Plant Physiology 141: 346–350.

Neill S, Desikan R and Hancock J (2002a) Hydrogen peroxide signalling. Current Opinion in Plant Biology 5: 388–395.

Neill S, Desikan R, Clarke A, Hurst RD and Hancock J (2002b) Hydrogen peroxide and nitric oxide as signalling molecules in plants. Journal of Experimental Botany 53: 1237–1247.

Noctor G and Foyer CH (1998) Ascorbate and glutathione: keeping active oxygen under control. Annual Review of Plant Physiology and Plant Molecular Biology 49: 249–279.

Wojtaszek P (1997) Oxidative burst: an early plant response to pathogen infection. Biochemical Journal 322: 681–692.

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Mühlenbock, Per, Karpinska, Barbara, and Karpinski, Stanislaw(Sep 2007) Oxidative Stress and Redox Signalling in Plants. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. http://www.els.net [doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0020135]