Abscisic acid-independent stomatal CO2 signal transduction pathway and convergence of CO2 and ABA signaling downstream of OST1 kinase

Po Kai Hsu, Yohei Takahashi, Shintaro Munemasa, Ebe Merilo, Kristiina Laanemets, Rainer Waadt, Dianne Pater, Hannes Kollist, Julian I. Schroeder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

80 Citations (Scopus)


Stomatal pore apertures are narrowing globally due to the continuing rise in atmospheric [CO2]. CO2 elevation and the plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA) both induce rapid stomatal closure. However, the underlying signal transduction mechanisms for CO2/ ABA interaction remain unclear. Two models have been considered: (i) CO2 elevation enhances ABA concentrations and/or early ABA signaling in guard cells to induce stomatal closure and (ii) CO2 signaling merges with ABA at OST1/SnRK2.6 protein kinase activation. Here we use genetics, ABA-reporter imaging, stomatal conductance, patch clamp, and biochemical analyses to investigate these models. The strong ABA biosynthesis mutants nced3/nced5 and aba2-1 remain responsive to CO2 elevation. Rapid CO2-triggered stomatal closure in PYR/RCAR ABA receptor quadruple and hextuple mutants is not disrupted but delayed. Time-resolved ABA concentration monitoring in guard cells using a FRET-based ABA-reporter, ABAleon2.15, and ABA reporter gene assays suggest that CO2 elevation does not trigger [ABA] increases in guard cells, in contrast to control ABA exposures. Moreover, CO2 activates guard cell S-type anion channels in nced3/ nced5 and ABA receptor hextuple mutants. Unexpectedly, in-gel protein kinase assays show that unlike ABA, elevated CO2 does not activate OST1/SnRK2 kinases in guard cells. The present study points to a model in which rapid CO2 signal transduction leading to stomatal closure occurs via an ABA-independent pathway downstream of OST1/SnRK2.6. Basal ABA signaling and OST1/SnRK2 activity are required to facilitate the stomatal response to elevated CO2. These findings provide insights into the interaction between CO2/ABA signal transduction in light of the continuing rise in atmospheric [CO2].

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E9971-E9980
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number42
Publication statusPublished - Oct 16 2018


  • ABA
  • Abscisic acid
  • CO
  • Carbon dioxide
  • Stomatal closure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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