J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2008, Vol. 50 ›› Issue (10): 1230-1237.DOI: 10.1111/j.1744-7909.2008.00735.x

Special Issue: Abiotic Stresses

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Identification and Characterization of Proteins Associated with Plant Tolerance to Heat Stress

Bingru Huang and Chenping Xu   

  • Received:2008-03-14 Accepted:2008-06-17 Published:2008-10-05

Abstract: Heat stress is a major abiotic stress limiting plant growth and productivity in many areas of the world. Understanding mechanisms of plant adaptation to heat stress would facilitate the development of heat-tolerant cultivars for improving productivity in warm climatic regions. Protein metabolism involving protein synthesis and degradation is one of the most sensitive processes to heat stress. Changes in the level and expression pattern of some proteins may play an important role in plant adaptation to heat stress. The identification of stress-responsive proteins and pathways has been facilitated by an increasing number of tools and resources, including two-dimensional electrophoresis and mass spectrometry, and the rapidly expanding nucleotide and amino acid sequence databases. Heat stress may induce or enhance protein expression or cause protein degradation. The induction of heat-responsive proteins, particularly heat shock proteins (HSPs), plays a key role in plant tolerance to heat stress. Protein degradation involving various proteases is also important in regulating plant responses to heat stress. This review provides an overview of recent research on proteomic profiling for the identification of heat-responsive proteins associated with heat tolerance, heat induction and characteristics of HSPs, and protein degradation in relation to plant responses to heat stress.

Key words: heat shock proteins, heat stress, proteomics, stress response, thermotolerance

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