Unraveling the secrets of plant roots: Simplified method for large scale root exudate sampling and analysis in Arabidopsis thaliana [version 3; peer review: 2 approved, 1 approved with reservations]

Harihar Jaishree Subrahmaniam*, Camilla Lind Salomonsen, Simona Radutoiu, Bodil Ehlers, Marianne Glasius

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift/Konferencebidrag i tidsskrift /Bidrag til avisTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

Abstract

Background: Plants exude a plethora of compounds to communicate with their environment. Although much is known about above-ground plant communication, we are only beginning to fathom the complexities of below-ground chemical communication channels. Studying root-exuded compounds and their role in plant communication has been difficult due to the lack of standardized methodologies. Here, we develop an interdisciplinary workflow to explore the natural variation in root exudate chemical composition of the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. We highlight key challenges associated with sampling strategies and develop a framework for analyzing both narrow- and broad-scale patterns of root exudate composition in a large set of natural A. thaliana accessions. Methods: Our method involves cultivating individual seedlings in vitro inside a plastic mesh, followed by a short hydroponic sampling period in small quantities of ultrapure water. The mesh makes it easy to handle plants of different sizes and allows for large-scale characterization of individual plant root exudates under axenic conditions. This setup can also be easily extended for prolonged temporal exudate collection experiments. Furthermore, the short sampling time minimizes the duration of the experiment while still providing sufficient signal even with small volume of the sampling solution. We used ultra-high performance liquid chromatography coupled with quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UHPLC-QTOF-MS) for untargeted metabolic profiling, followed by tentative compound identification using MZmine3 and SIRIUS 5 software, to capture a broad overview of root exudate composition in A. thaliana accessions. Results: Based on 28 replicates of the Columbia genotype (Col-0) compared with 10 random controls, MZmine3 identified 354 metabolites to be present only in Col-0 by negative ionization. Of these, 254 compounds could be annotated by SIRIUS 5 software. Conclusions: The methodology developed in this study can be used to broadly investigate the role of root exudates as chemical signals in plant belowground interactions.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
Artikelnummer12
TidsskriftOpen Research Europe
Vol/bind3
Nummer12
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 2023

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