Antisense suppression of proline degradation improves tolerance to freezing and salinity in Arabidopsis thaliana

FEBS Lett. 1999 Nov 19;461(3):205-10. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(99)01451-9.


Synthesis, degradation, and transport of proline (Pro) are thought to cooperatively control its endogenous levels in higher plants in response to environmental conditions. To evaluate the function of Pro degradation in the regulation of the levels of Pro and to elucidate roles of Pro in stress tolerance, we generated antisense transgenic Arabidopsis plants with an AtProDH cDNA encoding proline dehydrogenase (ProDH), which catalyzes Pro degradation. Several transgenic lines accumulated Pro at higher levels than wild-type plants, providing evidence for a key role of ProDH in Pro degradation in Arabidopsis. These antisense transgenics were more tolerant to freezing and high salinity than wild-type plants, showing a positive correlation between Pro accumulation and stress tolerance in plants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Physiological
  • Arabidopsis / drug effects
  • Arabidopsis / physiology*
  • DNA, Complementary / genetics
  • DNA, Plant / genetics
  • Freezing*
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense / pharmacology*
  • Osmotic Pressure*
  • Plants, Genetically Modified
  • Proline / physiology*
  • Sodium Chloride / toxicity


  • DNA, Complementary
  • DNA, Plant
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense
  • Sodium Chloride
  • Proline