IV. Dissection of the heat stress response in Chlamydomonas


The insufficient ability of many crop plants to acclimate to severe heat stress has a significant impact on crop yield safety. This problem might be solved by transgenic approaches, given that the mechanisms underlying heat stress acclimation responses are understood. A large part of the plant’s heat stress response is mediated by heat shock transcription factors (HSFs). However, the high complexity of the HSF family in higher plants with at least 21 members has complicated the dissection of the heat stress response in plants. In contrast, the presence in Chlamydomonas of only one canonical HSF that exhibits all characteristic features of plant class A HSFs, made it attractive to use this alga for studying fundamental principles of the heat stress response in plants.



To understand the fundamental principles of the heat stress response in plants.


Current state

We have combined pharmaceutical and antisense/RNAi approaches, which have enabled us to establish a working model for the regulation of the stress response in Chlamydomonas. Moreover, we have applied our quantitative shotgun proteomics setup, as well as metabolomics and lipidomics approaches to monitor acclimation responses at various system levels in Chlamydomonas. These analyses have provided many entry points to dissect the response by targeted analyses in more detail.