Journal Article

Chlorine Ions but not Sodium Ions Alter Genome Stability of <i>Arabidopsis thaliana</i>

Alex Boyko, Andrey Golubov, Andriy Bilichak and Igor Kovalchuk

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 51, issue 6, pages 1066-1078
Published in print June 2010 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online April 2010 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pcp/pcq048
Chlorine Ions but not Sodium Ions Alter Genome Stability of Arabidopsis thaliana

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  • Molecular and Cell Biology
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Various environmental stresses influence plant genome stability. Most of these stresses, such as ionizing radiation, heavy metals and organic chemicals, represent potent DNA-damaging agents. Here, we show that exposure to NaCl, the stress that is not thought to cause direct DNA damage, results in an increase in the level of strand breaks and homologous recombination rates (RRs) in Arabidopsis thaliana plants. The effect of salt stress on the RR was found to be primarily associated with Cl ions, since exposure of plants to Na2SO4 did not increase the RR, whereas exposure to MgCl2 resulted in an increase. Changes in the number of strand breaks and in the RR were also paralleled by transcriptional activation of AtRad51 and down-regulation of AtKu70. The progeny of exposed plants exhibited higher RRs, higher expression of AtRad51, lower expression of AtKu70, higher tolerance to salt and methyl methane sulfate (MMS) stresses, as well as a higher increase in RR upon further exposure to stress. Our experiments showed that NaCl is a genotoxic stress that leads to somatic and transgenerational changes in recombination rates, and these changes are primarily triggered by exposure to Cl ions.

Keywords: Arabidopsis thaliana; Cl− and Na+; Homologous recombination rate; NaCl; Stresstolerance; Transgenerational changes

Journal Article.  9150 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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