Changes in the allocation of endogenous strigolactone improve plant biomass production on phosphate-poor soils

Guowei Liu, Johannes Pfeifer, Rita De Brito Francisco, Aurelia Emonet, Marina Stirnemann, Christian Gübeli, Olivier Hutter, Joelle Sasse, Christian Mattheyer, Ernst Stelzer, Achim Walter, Enrico Martinoia (+1 others)
Strigolactones (SLs) are carotenoid-derived phytohormones shaping plant architecture and inducing the symbiosis with endomycorrhizal fungi. In Petunia hybrida, SL transport within the plant and towards the rhizosphere is driven by the ABCG-class protein PDR1. PDR1 expression is regulated by phytohormones and by the soil phosphate abundance, and thus SL transport integrates plant development with nutrient conditions. We overexpressed PDR1 (PDR1 OE) to investigate whether increased endogenous SL
more » ... ased endogenous SL transport is sufficient to improve plant nutrition and productivity. Phosphorus quantification and nondestructive X-ray computed tomography were applied. Morphological and gene expression changes were quantified at cellular and whole tissue levels via time-lapse microscopy and quantitative PCR. PDR1 OE significantly enhanced phosphate uptake and plant biomass production on phosphate-poor soils. PDR1 OE plants showed increased lateral root formation, extended root hair elongation, faster mycorrhization and reduced leaf senescence. PDR1 overexpression allowed considerable SL biosynthesis by releasing SL biosynthetic genes from an SL-dependent negative feedback. The increased endogenous SL transport/biosynthesis in PDR1 OE plants is a powerful tool to improve plant growth on phosphate-poor soils. We propose PDR1 as an as yet unexplored trait to be investigated for crop production. The overexpression of PDR1 is a valuable strategy to investigate SL functions and transport routes. 784 New Phytologist (2018) 217: 784-798
doi:10.3929/ethz-b-000226180 fatcat:hturwvanwnflbnnekxfdrg3u6q