Arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis elicits shoot proteome changes that are modified during cadmium stress alleviation in Medicago truncatula

Aloui, Achref; Recorbet, Ghislaine; Robert, Franck; Schoefs, Benoît; Bertrand, Martine; Henry, Céline; Gianinazzi-Pearson, Vivienne; Dumas-Gaudot, Eliane; Aschi-Smiti, Samira
January 2011
BMC Plant Biology;2011, Vol. 11 Issue 1, p75
Academic Journal
Background: Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi, which engage a mutualistic symbiosis with the roots of most plant species, have received much attention for their ability to alleviate heavy metal stress in plants, including cadmium (Cd). While the molecular bases of Cd tolerance displayed by mycorrhizal plants have been extensively analysed in roots, very little is known regarding the mechanisms by which legume aboveground organs can escape metal toxicity upon AM symbiosis. As a model system to address this question, we used Glomus irregularecolonised Medicago truncatula plants, which were previously shown to accumulate and tolerate heavy metal in their shoots when grown in a substrate spiked with 2 mg Cd kg-1. Results: The measurement of three indicators for metal phytoextraction showed that shoots of mycorrhizal M. truncatula plants have a capacity for extracting Cd that is not related to an increase in root-to-shoot translocation rate, but to a high level of allocation plasticity. When analysing the photosynthetic performance in metal-treated mycorrhizal plants relative to those only Cd-supplied, it turned out that the presence of G. irregulare partially alleviated the negative effects of Cd on photosynthesis. To test the mechanisms by which shoots of Cd-treated mycorrhizal plants avoid metal toxicity, we performed a 2-DE/MALDI/TOF-based comparative proteomic analysis of the M. truncatula shoot responses upon mycorrhization and Cd exposure. Whereas the metal-responsive shoot proteins currently identified in non-mycorrhizal M. truncatula indicated that Cd impaired CO2 assimilation, the mycorrhiza-responsive shoot proteome was characterised by an increase in photosynthesis-related proteins coupled to a reduction in glugoneogenesis/glycolysis and antioxidant processes. By contrast, Cd was found to trigger the opposite response coupled the up-accumulation of molecular chaperones in shoot of mycorrhizal plants relative to those metal-free. Conclusion: Besides drawing a first picture of shoot proteome modifications upon AM symbiosis and/or heavy metal stress in legume plants, the current work argues for allocation plasticity as the main driving force for Cd extraction in aboveground tissues of M. truncatula upon mycorrhization. Additionally, according to the retrieved proteomic data, we propose that shoots of mycorrhizal legume plants escape Cd toxicity through a metabolic shift implying the glycolysis-mediated mobilization of defence mechanisms at the expense of the photosynthesisdependent symbiotic sucrose sink.


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