Identification and characterization of compounds that affect stomatal movements

Shigeo Toh, Shinpei Inoue, Yosuke Toda, Takahiro Yuki, Kyota Suzuki, Shin Hamamoto, Kohei Fukatsu, Saya Aoki, Mami Uchida, Eri Asai, Nobuyuki Uozumi, Ayato Sato, Toshinori Kinoshita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Regulation of stomatal aperture is essential for plant growth and survival in response to environmental stimuli. Opening of stomata induces uptake of CO2 for photosynthesis and transpiration, which enhances uptake of nutrients from roots. Light is the most important stimulus for stomatal opening. Under drought stress, the plant hormone ABA induces stomatal closure to prevent water loss. However, the molecular mechanisms of stomatal movements are not fully understood. In this study, we screened chemical libraries to identify compounds that affect stomatal movements in Commelina benghalensis and characterize the underlying molecular mechanisms. We identified nine stomatal closing compounds (SCL1-SCL9) that suppress light-induced stomatal opening by >50%, and two compounds (temsirolimus and CP-100356) that induce stomatal opening in the dark. Further investigations revealed that SCL1 and SCL2 had no effect on autophosphorylation of phototropin or the activity of the inward-rectifying plasma membrane (PM) K+ channel, KAT1, but suppressed blue light-induced phosphorylation of the penultimate residue, threonine, in PM H+-ATPase, which is a key enzyme for stomatal opening. SCL1 and SCL2 had no effect on ABA-dependent responses, including seed germination and expression of ABA-induced genes. These results suggest that SCL1 and SCL2 suppress light-induced stomatal opening at least in part by inhibiting blue light-induced activation of PM H+-ATPase, but not by the ABA signaling pathway. Interestingly, spraying leaves onto dicot and monocot plants with SCL1 suppressed wilting of leaves, indicating that inhibition of stomatal opening by these compounds confers tolerance to drought stress in plants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1568-1580
Number of pages13
JournalPlant and Cell Physiology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Aug 1


  • Arabidopsis thaliana
  • Chemical screening
  • Commelina benghalenthsis
  • Drought stress
  • Stomata
  • Vicia faba

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


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