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The apocarotenoid β-cyclocitric acid elicits drought tolerance in plants

Stefano d'Alessandro 1 Yusuke Mizokami 2 Bertrand Légeret 3 Michel Havaux 1, *
* Corresponding author
1 SAVE - Signalisation de l'Adaptation des Végétaux à l'Environnement
BIAM - Institut de Biosciences et Biotechnologies d'Aix-Marseille (ex-IBEB) : DRF/BIAM
3 EBM - Bioénergie et Microalgues
BIAM - Institut de Biosciences et Biotechnologies d'Aix-Marseille (ex-IBEB) : DRF/BIAM
Abstract : β-Cyclocitral (β-CC) is a volatile compound deriving from $^1O_2$ oxidation of β-carotene in plant leaves. β-CC elicits a retrograde signal, modulating $^1O_2$-responsive genes and enhancing tolerance to photooxidative stress. Here, we show that β-CC is converted into water-soluble β-cyclocitric acid (β-CCA) in leaves. This metabolite is a signal that enhances plant tolerance to drought by a mechanism different from known responses such as stomatal closure, osmotic potential adjustment, and jasmonate signaling. This action of β-CCA is a conserved mechanism, being observed in various plant species, and it does not fully overlap with the β-CC-dependent signaling, indicating that β-CCA induces only a branch of β-CC signaling. Overexpressing SCARECROW-LIKE14 (SCL14, a regulator of xenobiotic detoxification) increased drought tolerance and potentiated the protective effect of β-CCA, showing the involvement of the SCL14-dependent detoxification in the phenomenon. β-CCA is a bioactive apocarotenoid that could potentially be used to protect crop plants against drought.
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Submitted on : Monday, September 6, 2021 - 3:43:46 PM
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Stefano d'Alessandro, Yusuke Mizokami, Bertrand Légeret, Michel Havaux. The apocarotenoid β-cyclocitric acid elicits drought tolerance in plants. iScience, Elsevier, 2019, 19, pp.461-473. ⟨10.1016/j.isci.2019.08.003⟩. ⟨hal-03303928⟩

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