Preconditiong chickpea for chilling stress: Understanding associated mechanisms and role of FADs in membrane protection
Chickpea has evolved as a spring crop in warmer climate of West Asia. Therefore, it is prone to chilling injury as in North India, chickpea is cultivated in winter season. Preconditioning the plants with mild drought stress might triggers the signaling pathways that will prepare the plants to combat lethal cold stress. In this study, one chilling tolerant genotype PDG3 and one chilling sensitive genotype GPF2 of chickpea were preconditioned with mild drought stress and then exposed to lethal cold stress at 40C. To see the effects of preconditioning various cell responses were monitored by measuring ELI, MDA content, LOX activity, antioxidative enzymes SOD, CAT, APX, GPOX and GR, and mRNA expression of fatty acid desaturase (FAD-2) and small heat shock proteins (sHsp18.5 & sHsp22.7) at different phases. Both the genotypes behave differently to preconditioning. This study shows that preconditioning increases the tolerance capacity of chilling-sensitive genotype towards chilling stress. Whereas, preconditioning brings about adaptable changes in chilling tolerant plant PDG3 so, they can cope up with chilling stress. To conclude whole study, preconditioning with mild drought stress has ability to improve the tolerance against cold stress in chickpea.