2019 Volume 36 Issue 3 Pages 195-200
Exposure to salinity causes plants to trigger transcriptional induction of a particular set of genes for initiating salinity-stress responses. Recent transcriptome analyses reveal that expression of a population of salinity-inducible genes also exhibits circadian rhythms. However, since the analyses were performed independently from those with salinity stress, it is unclear whether the observed circadian rhythms simply represent their basal expression levels independently from their induction by salinity, or these rhythms demonstrate the function of the circadian clock to actively limit the timing of occurrence of the salinity induction to particular times in the day. Here, by using tomato, we demonstrate that salt inducibility in expression of particular salinity-stress related genes is temporally controlled in the day. Occurrence of salinity induction in expression of SlSOS2 and P5CS, encoding a sodium/hydrogen antiporter and an enzyme for proline biosynthesis, is limited specifically to the morning, whereas that of SlDREB2, which encodes a transcription factor involved in tomato responses to several abiotic stresses such as salinity and drought, is restricted specifically to the evening. Our findings not only demonstrate potential importance in further investigating the basis and significance of circadian gated salinity stress responses under fluctuating day/night conditions, but also provide the potential to exploit an effective way for improving performance of salinity resistance in tomato.