Heritable alteration in DNA methylation induced by nitrogen-deficiency stress accompanies enhanced tolerance by progenies to the stress in rice (Oryza sativa L.). Kou, H., P.; Li, Y.; Song, X., X.; Ou, X., F.; Xing, S., C.; Ma, J.; Von Wettstein, D.; and Liu, B. Journal of Plant Physiology.
abstract   bibtex   
Cytosine methylation is responsive to various biotic- and abiotic-stresses, which may produce heritable epialleles. Nitrogen (N)-deficiency is an abiotic stress being repeatedly experienced by plants. To address possible epigenetic consequences of N-deficiency-stress, we investigated the stability of cytosine methylation in rice (Oryza sativa L.) subsequent to a chronic (a whole-generation) N-deficiency at two levels, moderate (20�mg/L) and severe (10�mg/L), under hydroponic culture. MSAP analysis revealed that locus-specific methylation alteration occurred in leaf-tissue of the stressed plants (S0) experiencing either level of N-deficiency, which was validated by gel-blotting. Analysis on three non-stressed self-fed progenies (S1, S2 and S3) by gel-blotting indicated that ca. 50% of the altered methylation patterns in somatic cells (leaf) of the stressed S0 plants were recaptured in S1, which were then stably inherited to S2 and S3. Bisulfite sequencing of two variant MSAP loci with homology to low-copy retrotransposons on one stressed plant (S0) and its non-stressed progenies (S1 and S2) showed that whereas one locus exhibited limited and non-heritable CHH methylation alteration, the other locus manifested dramatic heritable hypermethylation at nearly all cytosine sites within the assayed region. Intriguingly, when two groups of S2 plants descended from the same N-deficiency-stressed S0 plant were re-subjected to the stress, the group inheriting the modified methylation patterns showed enhanced tolerance to the N-deficiency-stress compared with the group bearing the original patterns. Our results thus demonstrate heritability of an acquired adaptive trait in rice, which was accompanied by epigenetic inheritance of modified cytosine methylation patterns, implicating an epigenetic basis underlying the inheritance of an acquired trait in plants.
@article{
 title = {Heritable alteration in DNA methylation induced by nitrogen-deficiency stress accompanies enhanced tolerance by progenies to the stress in rice (Oryza sativa L.)},
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 keywords = {Abiotic stress,Adaptation,Cytosine methylation alteration,Epigenetic inheritance,Lamarckism,Nitrogen (N)-deficiency,Oryza sativa L.},
 volume = {In Press, },
 websites = {http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S017616171100229X},
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 abstract = { Cytosine methylation is responsive to various biotic- and abiotic-stresses, which may produce heritable epialleles. Nitrogen (N)-deficiency is an abiotic stress being repeatedly experienced by plants. To address possible epigenetic consequences of N-deficiency-stress, we investigated the stability of cytosine methylation in rice (Oryza sativa L.) subsequent to a chronic (a whole-generation) N-deficiency at two levels, moderate (20�mg/L) and severe (10�mg/L), under hydroponic culture. MSAP analysis revealed that locus-specific methylation alteration occurred in leaf-tissue of the stressed plants (S0) experiencing either level of N-deficiency, which was validated by gel-blotting. Analysis on three non-stressed self-fed progenies (S1, S2 and S3) by gel-blotting indicated that ca. 50% of the altered methylation patterns in somatic cells (leaf) of the stressed S0 plants were recaptured in S1, which were then stably inherited to S2 and S3. Bisulfite sequencing of two variant MSAP loci with homology to low-copy retrotransposons on one stressed plant (S0) and its non-stressed progenies (S1 and S2) showed that whereas one locus exhibited limited and non-heritable CHH methylation alteration, the other locus manifested dramatic heritable hypermethylation at nearly all cytosine sites within the assayed region. Intriguingly, when two groups of S2 plants descended from the same N-deficiency-stressed S0 plant were re-subjected to the stress, the group inheriting the modified methylation patterns showed enhanced tolerance to the N-deficiency-stress compared with the group bearing the original patterns. Our results thus demonstrate heritability of an acquired adaptive trait in rice, which was accompanied by epigenetic inheritance of modified cytosine methylation patterns, implicating an epigenetic basis underlying the inheritance of an acquired trait in plants.},
 bibtype = {article},
 author = {Kou, H P and Li, Y and Song, X X and Ou, X F and Xing, S C and Ma, J and Von Wettstein, D and Liu, B},
 journal = {Journal of Plant Physiology}
}
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