Indexed on: 13 Jul '12Published on: 13 Jul '12Published in: Plant physiology
Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascades support the flow of extracellular signals to intracellular target molecules and ultimately drive a diverse array of physiological functions in cells, tissues, and organisms by interacting with other proteins. Yet, our knowledge of the global physical MAPK interactome in plants remains largely fragmented. Here, we utilized the yeast two-hybrid system and coimmunoprecipitation, pull-down, bimolecular fluorescence complementation, subcellular localization, and kinase assay experiments in the model crop rice (Oryza sativa) to systematically map what is to our knowledge the first plant MAPK-interacting proteins. We identified 80 nonredundant interacting protein pairs (74 nonredundant interactors) for rice MAPKs and elucidated the novel proteome-wide network of MAPK interactors. The established interactome contains four membrane-associated proteins, seven MAP2Ks (for MAPK kinase), four MAPKs, and 59 putative substrates, including 18 transcription factors. Several interactors were also validated by experimental approaches (in vivo and in vitro) and literature survey. Our results highlight the importance of OsMPK1, an ortholog of tobacco (Nicotiana benthamiana) salicyclic acid-induced protein kinase and Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) AtMPK6, among the rice MAPKs, as it alone interacts with 41 unique proteins (51.2% of the mapped MAPK interaction network). Additionally, Gene Ontology classification of interacting proteins into 34 functional categories suggested MAPK participation in diverse physiological functions. Together, the results obtained essentially enhance our knowledge of the MAPK-interacting protein network and provide a valuable research resource for developing a nearly complete map of the rice MAPK interactome.