A Casparian strip domain-like gene, CASPL, negatively alters growth and cold tolerance Academic Article uri icon


  • A cold-induced transcript encoding a Casparian strip membrane domain (CASP)-like protein (ClCASPL) was identified in watermelon (Citrullus lanatus). Fluorescence microscopy analysis showed that ClCASPL-GFP is localized in the plasma membrane. The orthologous gene in Arabidopsis thaliana (AtCASPL4C1) was also found to play an important role in cold tolerance. Expression analysis using a β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter reveals that AtCASPL4C1 is widely expressed in a variety of organs and is cold inducible. Analysis of AtCASPL4C1 T-DNA knock-out plants showed altered growth dynamics, faster growth, increased biomass (dry weight) and earlier flowering compared to wild type (Col-0) and ClCASPL overexpressing plants. AtCASPL4C1 knock-out plants showed elevated tolerance to cold stress, while overexpressing CICASPL resulted in increased sensitivity to cold stress in Arabidopsis. Interestingly, AtCASPL4C1 knock-out plants did not display significant alterations in the Casparian strip formation in roots. Thus, the combination of these results suggests a role for CICASPL and AtCASPL4C1 beyond Casparian strip formation in roots, possibly indicating a more fundamental role in vascular tissue.

publication date

  • 2015