Wheat (Triticum aestivum), one of the most important cereal crops, is often threatened by drought. In this study, water deficit significantly reduced the height of plants and yield of grains. To explore further the effect of drought stress on the development and yield of grains, we first performed a large scale phosphoproteome analysis of developing grains in wheat. A total of 590 unique phosphopeptides, representing 471 phosphoproteins, were identified under well-watered conditions. Motif-X analysis showed that four motifs were enriched, including [sP], [Rxxs], [sDxE], and [sxD]. Through comparative phosphoproteome analysis between well-watered and water-deficit conditions, we found that 63 unique phosphopeptides, corresponding to 61 phosphoproteins, showed significant changes in phosphorylation level (≥2-fold intensities). Functional analysis suggested that some of these proteins may be involved in signal transduction, embryo and endosperm development of grains, and drought response and defense under water-deficit conditions. Moreover, we also found that some chaperones may play important roles in protein refolding or degradation when the plant is subjected to water stress. These results provide a detailed insight into the stress response and defense mechanisms of developmental grains at the phosphoproteome level. They also suggested some potential candidates for further study of transgenosis and drought stress as well as incorporation into molecular breeding for drought resistance.
- drought stress
- grain development
- quantitative phosphoproteomics
- Triticum aestivum
ASJC Scopus subject areas