Plant molecular biology

Comparative proteomics and physiological characterization of Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings in responses to Ochratoxin A.

PMID 23625346


Ochratoxin A (OTA) is a mycotoxin that is primarily produced by Aspergillus ochraceus and Penicillium verrucosum. This mycotoxin is a contaminant of food and feedstock worldwide and may induce cell death in plants. To investigate the dynamic growth process of Arabidopsis seedlings in response to OTA stress and to obtain a better understanding of the mechanism of OTA toxicity towards Arabidopsis, a comparative proteomics study using 2-DE and MALDI-TOF/TOF MS/MS was performed. Mass spectrometry analysis identified 59 and 51 differentially expressed proteins in seedlings exposed to 25 and 45 μM OTA for 7 days, respectively. OTA treatment decreased root elongation and leaf area, increased anthocyanin accumulation, damaged the photosynthetic apparatus and inhibited photosynthesis. Treatment of the seedlings with 25 μM OTA enhanced energy metabolism, whereas higher concentration of OTA (45 μM) inhibited energy metabolism in the seedlings. OTA treatment caused an increase of ROS, an enhancement of antioxidant enzyme defense responses, disturbance of redox homeostasis and activation of lipid oxidation. Glutamine and S-adenosylmethionine metabolism may also play important roles in the response to OTA. In conclusion, our study provided novel insights regarding the response of Arabidopsis to OTA at the level of the proteome. These results are expected to be highly useful for understanding the physiological responses and dissecting the OTA response pathways in higher plants.