Novel Transcriptome Study and Detection of Metabolic Variations in UV-B-Treated Date Palm (Phoenix dactylifera cv. Khalas)
International Journal of Molecular Sciences
Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera) is one of the most widespread fruit crop species and can tolerate drastic environmental conditions that may not be suitable for other fruit species. Excess UV-B stress is one of the greatest concerns for date palm trees and can cause genotoxic effects. Date palm responds to UV-B irradiation through increased DEG expression levels and elaborates upon regulatory metabolic mechanisms that assist the plants in adjusting to this exertion. Sixty-day-old Khalas date
... old Khalas date palm seedlings (first true-leaf stage) were treated with UV-B (wavelength, 253.7 nm; intensity, 75 μW cm−2 for 72 h (16 h of UV light and 8 h of darkness). Transcriptome analysis revealed 10,249 and 12,426 genes whose expressions were upregulated and downregulated, respectively, compared to the genes in the control. Furthermore, the differentially expressed genes included transcription factor-encoding genes and chloroplast- and photosystem-related genes. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) was used to detect metabolite variations. Fifty metabolites, including amino acids and flavonoids, showed changes in levels after UV-B excess. Amino acid metabolism was changed by UV-B irradiation, and some amino acids interacted with precursors of different pathways that were used to synthesize secondary metabolites, i.e., flavonoids and phenylpropanoids. The metabolite content response to UV-B irradiation according to hierarchical clustering analysis showed changes in amino acids and flavonoids compared with those of the control. Amino acids might increase the function of scavengers of reactive oxygen species by synthesizing flavonoids that increase in response to UV-B treatment. This study enriches the annotated date palm unigene sequences and enhances the understanding of the mechanisms underlying UV-B stress through genetic manipulation. Moreover, this study provides a sequence resource for genetic, genomic and metabolic studies of date palm.