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, 10 (5), e0128041

Transcriptome Profiling of the Potato (Solanum Tuberosum L.) Plant Under Drought Stress and Water-Stimulus Conditions


Transcriptome Profiling of the Potato (Solanum Tuberosum L.) Plant Under Drought Stress and Water-Stimulus Conditions

Lei Gong et al. PLoS One.


Drought stress can seriously affect tuberization, yield and quality of potato plant. However, the precise molecular mechanisms governing potato stolon's response to drought stress and water supply are not very well understood. In this work, a potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) variant, Ningshu 4, was subjected to severe drought stress treatment (DT) and re-watering treatment (RWT) at tuber bulking stage. Strand-specific cDNA libraries of stolon materials were constructed for paired-end transcriptome sequencing analyses and differentially expressed gene (DEG) examination. In comparison to untreated-control (CT) plants, 3189 and 1797 DEGs were identified in DT and RWT plants and 4154 solely expressed DEGs were screened out from these two comparison groups. Interestingly, 263 genes showed opposite expression patterns in DT and RWT plants. Among them, genes homologous to Protein Phosphatase 2C (PP2C), Aspartic protease in guard cell 1 (ASPG1), auxin-responsive protein, Arabidopsis pseudo response regualtor 2 (APRR2), GA stimulated transcripts in Arabidopsis 6 (GASA6), Calmodulin-like protein 19 (CML19), abscisic acid 8'-hydroxylases and calcium-transporting ATPase, et al. were related with drought-stress and water stimulus response. Sixteen DEGs involved in starch synthesis, accumulation and tuber formation exhibited significantly different expression upon re-watering. In addition, 1630, 1527 and 1596 transcription factor encoding genes were detected in CT, DT and RWT. DEGs of ERF, bHLH, MYB, NAC, WRKY, C2H2, bZIP and HD-ZIP families accounted for 50% in three comparison groups, respectively. Furthermore, characteristics of 565 gene ontology (GO) and 108 Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathways (KEGG) were analyzed with the 4154 DEGs. All these results suggest that the drought- and water-stimulus response could be implemented by the regulated expression of metabolic pathway DEGs, and these genes were involved in the endogenous hormone biosynthesis and signal transduction pathways. Our data provide more direct information for future study on the interaction between key genes involved in various metabolic pathways under drought stress in potato.

Conflict of interest statement

Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.


Fig 1
Fig 1. Verification of differentially expressed genes in DT vs. CT group (A) and in RW vs. CT group (B) by qRT-PCR.
Fig 2
Fig 2. Gene Ontology (GO) categories of assembled differentially expressed genes in the comparison groups.
Fig 3
Fig 3. GO analysis of DT vs. CT group (A) and RWT vs. CT group (B) illustrated by Directed Acyclic Graph.
A, *significantly enriched GO categories, including GO:0008152 (metabolic process, corrected p-value 2.45E-15), GO:0006950 (response to stress, corrected p-value 6.85E-16), GO:0071704 (organic substance metabolic process, corrected p-value 5.13E-15), GO:0044238 (primary metabolic process, corrected p-value 2.45E-15) and GO:0034622 (cellular macromolecular complex assembly, corrected p-value 1.91E-13). B, *significantly enriched GO categories, including GO: 0008152 (metabolic process, corrected p-value 5.97E-16), GO:0044237 (cellular metabolic process, corrected p-value 3.7E-16) and GO:0006412 (translation, corrected p-value 1.46E-19).
Fig 4
Fig 4. Top 10 statistically enriched KEGG pathways in the comparison groups.
sly01100: Metabolic pathways, sly01110: Biosynthesis of secondary metabolites, sly03010: Ribosome, sly01200: Carbon metabolism, sly00190: Oxidative phosphorylation, sly04141: Protein processing in endoplasmic reticulum, sly00195: Photosynthesis, sly04075: Plant hormone signal transduction, sly01230: Biosynthesis of amino acids, sly00500: Starch and sucrose metabolism, sly04626: Plant-pathogen interaction, sly00010: Glycolysis/Gluconeogenesis, sly00710: Carbon fixation in photosynthetic organisms, sly03040: Spliceosome.
Fig 5
Fig 5. Top 10 families of differentially expressed transcription factors in DT vs. CT group (A), in RWT vs. CT group (B) and RWT vs. DT (C).

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Grant support

This work has been jointly supported by the following grants: The China Agriculture Research System (CARS-10-ES30), The Mega Crop Breeding Project of Ningxia District-Engineering of New Potato Cultivars, Natural Science Foundation of Ningxia (NZ13098) and The Scientific and Technological Innovation Priority Research Program of Ningxia Academy of Agriculture and Forestry Science (NKYG-13-05, NKYG-14-05 and NKYG-15-06).