Integrated framework of the immune-defense transcriptional signatures in the arabidopsis shoot apical meristem

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International Journal of Molecular Sciences


© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. The growing tips of plants grow sterile; therefore, disease-free plants can be generated from them. How plants safeguard growing apices from pathogen infection is still a mystery. The shoot apical meristem (SAM) is one of the three stem cells niches that give rise to the above ground plant organs. This is very well explored; however, how signaling networks orchestrate immune responses against pathogen infections in the SAM remains unclear. To reconstruct a transcriptional framework of the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) pertaining to various SAM cellular populations, we acquired large-scale transcriptome datasets from the public repository Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO). We identify here distinct sets of genes for various SAM cellular populations that are enriched in immune functions, such as immune defense, pathogen infection, biotic stress, and response to salicylic acid and jasmonic acid and their biosynthetic pathways in the SAM. We further linked those immune genes to their respective proteins and identify interactions among them by mapping a transcriptome-guided SAM-interactome. Furthermore, we compared stem-cells regulated transcriptome with innate immune responses in plants showing transcriptional separation among their DEGs in Arabidopsis. Besides unleashing a repertoire of immune-related genes in the SAM, our analysis provides a SAM-interactome that will help the community in designing functional experiments to study the specific defense dynamics of the SAM-cellular populations. Moreover, our study promotes the essence of large-scale omics data re-analysis, allowing a fresh look at the SAM-cellular transcriptome repurposing data-sets for new questions.

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