Mitochondrial small heat-shock protein enhances thermotolerance in tobacco plants

FEBS Lett. 2004 Jan 16;557(1-3):265-8. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(03)01494-7.


To clarify the role of mitochondrial small heat-shock protein (MT-sHSP) in the heat-shock response, we introduced the tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) MT-sHSP gene under the control of the 35S promoter into tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum), and examined the thermotolerance of the transformed plants. Irrespective of the orientation, sense or antisense, of the gene, the transgenic plants exhibited a normal morphology and growth rate in the vegetative growth stage. When 4-week-old seedlings were exposed to sudden heat stress, the sense plants which overexpress the MT-sHSP gene exhibited thermotolerance, whereas the antisense plants in which the expression of the gene is suppressed exhibited susceptibility.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acclimatization / physiology*
  • Genetic Vectors
  • Heat-Shock Proteins / genetics
  • Heat-Shock Proteins / metabolism*
  • Lycopersicon esculentum / genetics
  • Mitochondria / physiology*
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism*
  • Plants, Genetically Modified
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Tobacco / genetics
  • Tobacco / growth & development
  • Tobacco / physiology*


  • Heat-Shock Proteins
  • Plant Proteins
  • Recombinant Proteins