Group of Plant Molecular Physiology

Group of Plant Molecular Physiology

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Faculty staff

Professor Dr. Maki KATSUHARA
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Assoc. Prof. Dr. Takayuki SASAKI
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Lectures: Physiology of Environmental Responses, Plant Physiology and Function
Keywords: Aquaporins; Salt stress; Water transport; Aluminum stress; Malate transporter; Acidic soil

Summary of main research topics

Physiological and molecular analysis of plant membrane transporters
We study the molecular functions of plant cells and biomembranes in response to drought and salt stress environments, especially water channels (aquaporins) and cation channels. In addition to water transport, we are investigating another aquaporin function transporting low molecular-weight compounds including CO2. Electrophysiological measurements are also conducted to analyze sodium and potassium transporters in a salt stress condition.
We cloned the aluminum-tolerant wheat gene ALMT1, which is a highly promising gene to confer acid-soil tolerance on crops. The ALMT1 gene belongs to the ALMT gene family, which has been found only in the plant kingdom. We expect to elucidate unique plant functions coded by individual ALMT genes.

Latest publications (for complete and most current publications visit group pages)

(1) Suzuki, K., Costa, A., Nakayama, H., Katsuhara, M., Shinmyo, A. and Horie, T. OsHKT2;2/1-mediated Na+ influx over K+ uptake in roots potentially increases toxic Na+ accumulation in a salt-tolerant landrace of rice Nona Bokra upon salinity stress. J. Plant Res. 129: 67-77. DOI: 10.1007/s10265-015-0764-1 (2016. 1.)
(2) Mahdieh, M., Mostajeran, A. and Katsuhara, M. Phosphorus Deprivation Effects on Water Relations of Nicotiana tabacum Plant via Reducing Plasma Membrane Permeability. Russ. J. Plant Phys. 63: 54-57. DOI: 10.1134/ S102144371601012X (2016. 1.)
(3) Suzuki, K., Yamaji, N., Costa, A., Okuma, E., Kobayashi, N. I., Kashiwagi, T., Katsuhara, M., Wang, C., Tanoi, K., Murata, Y., Schroeder, J. I., Ma, J. F. and Horie, T. OsHKT1;4-mediated Na+-selective transport contributes to Na+ exclusion from leaf blades of rice at the reproductive growth stage upon salt stress. BMC Plant Biol. 16: 22. DOI: 10.1186/s12870-016-0709-4 (2016. 1.)
(4) Azad, A. K., Ahmed, J., Alum, M. A., Hasan, M.M., Ishikawa, T., Sawa, Y. and Katsuhara, M. Genome-Wide Characterization of Major Intrinsic Proteins in Four Grass Plants and Their Non-aqua Transport Selectivity Profiles with Comparative Perspective. PLoS ONE 11: e0157735. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0157735 (2016. 6.)
(5) Sharipova, G., Veselov, D., Kudoyarova, G., Fricke, W., Dodd, I., Katsuhara, M., Furuichi, T., Veselova, S. and Veselov, S. Exogenous application of abscisic acid (ABA) increases root and cell hydraulic conductivity and abundance of some aquaporin isoforms in the ABA deficient barley mutant Az34. Ann. Bot. 118: 777-785. doi: 10.1093/aob/mcw117 (2016. 10.)
(6) Rhee, J., Horie, T., Sasano, S., Nakahara, Y. and Katsuhara, M. Identification of an H2O2 permeable PIP aquaporin in barley and a serine residue promoting H2O2 transport. Physiologia Plantarum Version of Record online DOI: 10.1111/ppl.12508 (2016. 10. Online preview)
(7) Sasaki, T., Tsuchiya, Y., Ariyoshi, M., Ryan, P.R. and Yamamoto, Y. A chimeric protein of aluminum-activated malate transporter generated from wheat and Arabidopsis shows enhanced response to trivalent cations. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1858: 1427-1435. (2016. 7.)
(8) Takanashi, K., Sasaki, T., Kan, T., Saida, Y., Sugiyama, A., Yamamoto, Y. and Yazaki, K. A dicarboxylate transporter, LjALMT4, mainly expressed in nodules of Lotus japonicas. Mol. Plant Microbe Interact. 29: 584-592. (2016. 7.)
(9) Sasaki, T., Tsuchiya, Y., Ariyoshi, M., Nakano, R., Ushijima, K., Kubo, Y., Mori. I.C., Higashiizumi, E., Galis, I. and Yamamoto, Y. Two members of the aluminum-activated malate transporter family, SlALMT4 and SlALMT5, are expressed during fruit development and the overexpression of SlALMT5 alters organic acid contents in seeds in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum). Plant Cell Physiol. 57: 2367-2379. (2016. 11.)