Changes in physiology and protein abundance in salt-stressed wheat chloroplasts

Mol Biol Rep. 2012 Sep;39(9):9059-74. doi: 10.1007/s11033-012-1777-7. Epub 2012 Jun 27.


Leaves are the final site of salinity perception through the roots. To better understand how wheat chloroplasts proteins respond to salt stress, the study aimed to the physiochemical and comparative proteomics analysis. Seedlings (12-days-old) were exposed to 150 mM NaCl for 1, 2, or 3 days. Na(+) ions were rapid and excessively increase in roots, stems and leaves. Photosynthesis and transpiration rate, stomatal conductance, and relative water content decreased whereas the level of proline increased. Statistically significant positive correlations were found among the content of hydrogen peroxide, activity of catalase, and superoxide dismutase under salt stress in wheat. Protein abundance within the chloroplasts was examined by two-dimensional electrophoresis. More than 100 protein spots were reproducibly detected on each gel, 21 protein spots were differentially expressed during salt treatment. Using linear quadruple trap-Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance (LTQ-FTICR) hybrid mass spectrometry, 65 unique proteins assigned in the differentially abundant spots. Most proteins were up-regulated at 2 and 3 days after being down-regulated at 1 day. Others showed only slight responses after 3 days of treatment, including Rubisco, glutamate dehydrogenase, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, isocitrate dehydrogenase, photosystem I, and pyridoxal biosynthesis protein PDX1.2 and PDX1.3. The ATP synthase (α, β, and γ) and V-type proton ATPase subunits were down-regulated resulting showed negative impact by Na(+) on the photosynthetic machinery. This ephemeral increase and subsequent decrease in protein contents may demonstrate a counterbalancing influence of identified proteins. Several proteins such as cytochrome b6-f (Cyt b6-f), germin-like-protein, the γ-subunit of ATP synthase, glutamine synthetase, fructose-bisphosphate aldolase, S-adenosylmethionine synthase, carbonic anhydrase were gradually up-regulated during the period of treatment, which can be identified as marker proteins.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Chloroplasts / metabolism*
  • Ions / metabolism
  • Plant Leaves / metabolism
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism*
  • Proteome
  • Proteomics / methods
  • Salinity*
  • Seedlings / metabolism
  • Sodium Chloride / metabolism
  • Stress, Physiological*
  • Triticum / metabolism*


  • Ions
  • Plant Proteins
  • Proteome
  • Sodium Chloride