2016 Volume 33 Issue 4 Pages 235-243
Identification of the factors involved in the regulation of senescence and the analysis of their function are important for both a biological understanding of the senescence mechanism and the improvement of agricultural productivity. In this study, we identified an ERF gene termed “ERF gene conferring Postharvest longevity Improvement 1” (EPI1) as a possible regulator of senescence in Arabidopsis. We found that EPI1 possesses transcriptional repression activity and that the transgenic plants overexpressing EPI1 and expressing its chimeric repressor, EPI1-SRDX, commonly suppressed the darkness-induced senescence in their excised aerial parts. These transgenic plants additionally maintained a high level of chlorophyll, even after the methyl jasmonate (MeJA) treatment, which stimulated senescence in the dark. In addition, we found that senescence-induced and -reduced genes are down- and upregulated, respectively, in the MeJA-treated transgenic plants under darkness. Our results suggest that EPI1 functions as a negative regulator of the dark-induced and JA-stimulated senescence.