A mitochondrial complex I defect impairs cold-regulated nuclear gene expression

Byeong Ha Lee, Hojoung Lee, Liming Xiong, Jian Kang Zhu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

214 Scopus citations


To study low-temperature signaling in plants, we previously screened for cold stress response mutants using bioluminescent Arabidopsis plants that express the firefly luciferase reporter gene driven by the stress-responsive RD29A promoter. Here, we report on the characterization and cloning of one mutant, frostbite1 (fro1), which shows reduced luminescence induction by cold. fro1 plants display reduced cold induction of stress-responsive genes such as RD29A, KIN1, COR15A, and COR47. fro1 leaves have a reduced capacity for cold acclimation, appear water-soaked, leak electrolytes, and accumulate reactive oxygen species constitutively. FRO1 was isolated through positional cloning and found to encode a protein with high similarity to the 18-kD Fe-S subunit of complex I (NADH dehydrogenase, EC in the mitochondrial electron transfer chain. Confocal imaging shows that the FRO1:green fluorescent protein fusion protein is localized in mitochondria. These results suggest that cold induction of nuclear gene expression is modulated by mitochondrial function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1235-1251
Number of pages17
JournalPlant Cell
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


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