Plants encounter biotic and abiotic stresses many times during their life cycle and this limits their productivity. Moderate heat stress (HS) primes a plant to survive higher temperatures that are lethal in the naïve state. Once temperature stress subsides, the memory of the priming event is actively retained for several days preparing the plant to better cope with recurring HS. Recently, chromatin regulation at different levels has been implicated in HS memory. Here we report that the chromatin protein BRUSHY1/TONSOKU/MGOUN3 (BRU1/TSK/MGO3) plays a role in the HS memory in Arabidopsis thaliana. BRU1 is also involved in transcriptional gene silencing and DNA damage repair. This corresponds with the functions of its mammalian orthologue TONSL/NFΚBIL2. During HS memory, BRU1 is required to maintain sustained induction of HS memory-associated genes, whereas it is dispensable for the acquisition of thermotolerance. In summary, we report that BRU1 is required for HS memory in A. thaliana, and propose a model where BRU1 mediates the epigenetic inheritance of chromatin states across DNA replication and cell division.
- Arabidopsis thaliana