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A novel protein kinase involved in Na+ exclusion revealed from positional cloningpc


Roy, S.J., Huang, W., Wang, X., Evrard, A., Schmöckel, S., Zafar, Z.U. and Mark​ Tester. (2013) A novel protein kinase involved in Na+ exclusion revealed from positional cloning. Plant Cell & Environment 35: 553-568.  doi: 10.1111/j.1365-3040.2012.02595.x.​


S. J. ROY, W. HUANG, X. J. WANG, A. EVRARD, S. M. SCHMÖCKEL, Z. U. ZAFAR and Mark Tester


Arabidopsis, barley, AtCIPK16, QTL mapping.




Salinity is a major abiotic stress which affects crop plants around the world, resulting in substantial loss of yield and millions of dollars of lost revenue. High levels of Na+ in shoot tissue have many adverse effects and, crucially, yield in cereals is commonly inversely proportional to the extent of shoot Na+ accumulation. We therefore need to identify genes, resistant plant cultivars and cellular processes that are involved in salinity tolerance, with the goal of intro- ducing these factors into commercially available crops. Through the use of an Arabidopsis thaliana mapping population, we have identified a highly significant quan- titative trait locus (QTL) linked to Na+ exclusion. Fine mapping of this QTL identified a protein kinase (AtCIPK16), related to AtSOS2, that was significantly up-regulated under salt stress. Greater Na+ exclusion was associated with significantly higher root expression of AtCIPK16, which is due to differences in the gene’s pro- moter. Constitutive overexpression of the gene in Arabi- dopsis leads to plants with significant reduction in shoot Na+ and greater salinity tolerance. amiRNA knock-downs of AtCIPK16 in Arabidopsis show a negative correlation between the expression levels of the gene and the amount of shoot Na+. Transgenic barley lines overexpressing AtCIPK16 show increased salinity tolerance.