Nitric oxide reduces hydrogen peroxide accumulation involved in water stress-induced subcellular anti-oxidant defense in maize plants.J Integr Plant Biol. 2008 Feb; 50(2):231-43.JI
Nitric oxide (NO) is a bioactive molecule involved in many biological events, and has been reported as pro-oxidant as well as anti-oxidant in plants. In the present study, the sources of NO production under water stress, the role of NO in water stress-induced hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) accumulation and subcellular activities of anti-oxidant enzymes in leaves of maize (Zea mays L.) plants were investigated. Water stress induced defense increases in the generation of NO in maize mesphyll cells and the activity of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) in the cytosolic and microsomal fractions of maize leaves. Water stress-induced defense increases in the production of NO were blocked by pretreatments with inhibitors of NOS and nitrate reductase (NR), suggesting that NO is produced from NOS and NR in leaves of maize plants exposed to water stress. Water stress also induced increases in the activities of the chloroplastic and cytosolic anti-oxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), and glutathione reductase (GR), and the increases in the activities of anti-oxidant enzymes were reduced by pretreatments with inhibitors of NOS and NR. Exogenous NO increases the activities of water stress-induced subcellular anti-oxidant enzymes, which decreases accumulation of H2O2. Our results suggest that NOS and NR are involved in water stress-induced NO production and NOS is the major source of NO. The potential ability of NO to scavenge H2O2 is, at least in part, due to the induction of a subcellular anti-oxidant defense.