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Plant Molecular Responses to Salt Stress
* 1 , 2 , 2
1  Università degli Studi della Campania "Luigi Vanvitelli"
2  Università degli Studi della Campania "Luigi Vanvitelli". Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Ambientali, Biologiche e Farmaceutiche, via A. Vivaldi, 43-8100 Caserta.


Plants are frequenly exposed to environmental changes. In fact, abiotic stresses are the most serious
factors limiting the productivity of agricultural crops, with adverse effects on germination, plant
vigor and crop quality and yield. In particular, salinity stress is a global problem widespread that affects over 800 million ha. In the Mediterranean area, seawater intrusion into freshwater aquifers highly contribute to soil salinisation, resulting in crops productivity decrease. Responses to abiotic stresses are complicated pathways involving the interaction of different signalling molecules to coordinate a specific metabolic pathways. The regulation of these responses involves transcriptional factors, which regulate gene expression by binding to specific DNA promoter sequences. Transcription factors involved in salt stress responses include DRE-related binding factors, leucine zipper DNA binding proteins, putative zinc finger proteins, myb proteins, bZIP / HD-ZIPs, and AP2 / EREBP. Particularly, AP2 / ERF domain proteins include the DREB or CBF proteins binding to dehydration response elements (DRE) or C-repeats. Transcription factors are powerful targets for genetic engineering in abiotic stress resistance in crops and many studies have been focused on this topic.

Keywords: Transcriptional factors; genes activation; salt stress