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Jaakko Kangasjärvi



 Zoology Dept., College of Science, Building (5)

Office: AB101

Telephone: 4675777

Project Title

The role of Reactive Oxygen Species in the molecular mechanisms in drought, heat and salt stress

Project Summary

All living organisms react to both internal and external cues and reprogram their physiology and gene expression based on the information received; this is the central feature of growth and development as well as of environmental adaptation. These processes use the same basic scheme starting from the perception and recognition of a signal followed by the transmission of the signal leading to specific changes in physiology, gene expression, metabolite content and growth (Bogeat-Triboulot et al, 2007). Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) are ubiquitous metabolites in all aerobic organisms. ROS include for example superoxide (•O2-), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), hydroxyl radical (•OH), singlet oxygen (1O2). It is now recognized that controlled production of ROS has significant signaling functions in several abiotic stresses, such has heat, drought and salinity, as well as in the regulation of stomatal closure (Brosché et al., 2010, Jaspers & Kangasjärvi 2010). ROS formation in different subcellular compartments is critical to act as “alarm” signal in the response to stress, and the concept of ROS as primarily signaling substances has emerged. The KSU-funded project will address the role of ROS in the adaptation and acclimation to heat, drought and salt stresses in date palm (Phoenix dactylifera) that is relevant for Saudi Arabian agriculture and is tolerant against drought, salinity and heat. The project will utilize the model plant Arabidopsis and publically available transcriptomic data to develop interaction network models in stress-induced gene expression to identify ROS-related components in drought, heat and salt stress, test the models in Arabidopsis and compare the relevance of the models in date palm, for which the genome sequence and transcriptomic tools are available.