Receptor-like cytoplasmic kinase STRK1 mediates salt tolerance in rice via H2O2 homeostasis ($) (Plant Cell)

Salinity is a widespread stressor. Zhou et al. investigated the role of receptor-like kinases (RLKs) in salinity tolerance by identifying RLKs that are transcriptionally upregulated by salt treatment. Candidates were introduced either as overexpression (full-length) or dominant negative (partial) clones, leading to the identification of STRK1 (salt tolerance receptor-like cytoplasmic kinase 1) as a conferring salt-tolerance.  STRK1 is a cytoplasmic kinase that is anchored to the plasma membrane by palmitoyl anchors (covalently linked fatty acids). Through a yeast two-hybrid study, the authors showed that STRK1 interacts with catalase, which it regulates through phosphorylation, which in turn confers tolerance to the oxidative stress that results from salt stress. Finally, the authors showed that overexpressing STRK1 improves grain yield under salt stress. (Summary by Mary Williams) Plant Cell 10.1105/tpc.17.01000