Involvement of Arabidopsis HOS15 in histone deacetylation and cold tolerance

Jianhua Zhu, Cheol Jeong Jae, Yanmei Zhu, Irina Sokolchik, Saori Miyazaki, Jian Kang Zhu, Paul M. Hasegawa, Hans J. Bohnert, Huazhong Shi, Dae Jin Yun, Ray A. Bressan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

251 Scopus citations


Histone modification in chromatin is one of the key control points in gene regulation in eukaryotic cells. Protein complexes composed of histone acetyltransferase or deacetylase, WD40 repeat protein, and many other components have been implicated in this process. Here, we report the identification and functional characterization of HOS15, a WD40-repeat protein crucial for repression of genes associated with abiotic stress tolerance through histone deacetylation in Arabidopsis. HOS15 shares high sequence similarity with human transducin-beta like protein (TBL), a component of a repressor protein complex involved in histone deacetylation. Mutation of the HOS15 gene renders mutant plants hypersensitive to freezing temperatures. HOS15 is localized in the nucleus and specifically interacts with histone H4. The level of acetylated histone H4 is higher in the hos15 mutant than in WT plants. Moreover, the stress inducible RD29A promoter is hyperinduced and associated with a substantially higher level of acetylated histone H4 in the hos15 mutant under cold stress conditions. Our results suggest a critical role for gene activation/repression by histone acetylation/deacetylation in plant acclimation and tolerance to cold stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4945-4950
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number12
StatePublished - Mar 25 2008


  • Cold responsive gene expression
  • Freezing tolerance
  • Histone H4 deacetylation
  • WD 40 protein


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