Plant molecular biology
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Nov 30;: 23196831
Arabidopsis suppressor mutant of abh1 shows a new face of the already known players: ABH1 (CBP80) and ABI4-in response to ABA and abiotic stresses during seed germination.
Agata Daszkowska-Golec, Weronika Wojnar, Marta Rosikiewicz, Iwona Szarejko, Miroslaw Maluszynski, Zofia Szweykowska-Kulinska, Artur Jarmolowski
Department of Genetics, Faculty of Biology and Environmental Protection, University of Silesia, Jagiellonska 28, 40-032, Katowice, Poland, email@example.com.
Although the importance of abscisic acid (ABA) in plant development and response to abiotic and biotic stresses is well recognized, the molecular basis of the signaling pathway has not been fully elucidated. Mutants in genes related to ABA are widely used as a tool for gaining insight into the mechanisms of ABA signal transduction and ABA-dependent stress response. We used a genetic approach of a suppressor screening in order to decipher the interaction between ABH1 (CBP80) and other components of ABA signaling. ABH1 (CBP80) encodes a large subunit of CBC (CAP BINDING COMPLEX) and the abh1 mutant is drought-tolerant and hypersensitive to ABA during seed germination. The suppressor mutants of abh1 were generated after chemical mutagenesis. The mutant named soa1 (suppressor of abh1 hypersensitivity to ABA 1) displayed an ABA-insensitive phenotype during seed germination. The genetic analysis showed that the soa1 phenotype is dominant in relation to abh1 and segregates as a single locus. Based on soa1's response to a wide spectrum of physiological assays during different stages of development, we used the candidate-genes approach in order to identify a suppressor gene. The molecular analysis revealed that mutation causing the phenotype of soa1 occurred in the ABI4 (ABA insensitive 4) gene. Analysis of pre-miR159 expression, whose processing depends on CBC, as well as targets of miR159: MYB33 and MYB101, which are positive regulators of ABA signaling, revealed a possible link between CBP80 (ABH1) and ABI4 presented here.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Nov 19;: 23161198
Trichome-specific expression of the amorpha-4,11-diene 12-hydroxylase (cyp71av1) gene, encoding a key enzyme of artemisinin biosynthesis in Artemisia annua, as reported by a promoter-GUS fusion.
School of Natural Sciences, Linnaeus University, 39182, Kalmar, Sweden.
Artemisinin derivatives are effective anti-malarial drugs. In order to design transgenic plants of Artemisia annua with enhanced biosynthesis of artemisinin, we are studying the promoters of genes encoding enzymes involved in artemisinin biosynthesis. A 1,151 bp promoter region of the cyp71av1 gene, encoding amorpha-4,11-diene 12-hydroxylase, was cloned. Alignment of the cloned promoter and other cyp71av1 promoter sequences indicated that the cyp71av1 promoter may be different in different A. annua varieties. Comparison to the promoter of amorpha-4,11-diene synthase gene showed a number of putative cis-acting regulatory elements in common, suggesting a co-regulation of the two genes. The cyp71av1 promoter sequence was fused to the β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene and two varieties of A. annua and Nicotiana tabacum were transformed. In A. annua, GUS expression was exclusively localized to glandular secretory trichomes (GSTs) of leaf primordia and top expanded leaves. In older leaves, there is a shift of expression to T-shaped trichomes (TSTs). Only TSTs showed GUS staining in lower leaves and there is no GUS staining in old leaves. GUS expression in flower buds was specifically localized to GSTs. The recombinant promoter carries the cis-acting regulatory elements required for GST-specific expression. The cyp71av1 promoter shows activity in young tissues. The recombinant promoter was up to 200 times more active than the wild type promoter. GUS expression in transgenic N. tabacum was localized to glandular heads. Transcript levels were up-regulated by MeJA. Wound responsiveness experiment showed that the cyp71av1 promoter does not appear to play any role in the response of A. annua to mechanical stress.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Nov 7;: 23131896
Suppression of CCR impacts metabolite profile and cell wall composition in Pinus radiata tracheary elements.
Armin Wagner, Yuki Tobimatsu, Geert Goeminne, Lorelle Phillips, Heather Flint, Diane Steward, Kirk Torr, Lloyd Donaldson, Wout Boerjan, John Ralph
Scion, Private Bag 3020, Rotorua, New Zealand, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Suppression of the lignin-related gene cinnamoyl-CoA reductase (CCR) in the Pinus radiata tracheary element (TE) system impacted both the metabolite profile and the cell wall matrix in CCR-RNAi lines. UPLC-MS/MS-based metabolite profiling identified elevated levels of p-coumaroyl hexose, caffeic acid hexoside and ferulic acid hexoside in CCR-RNAi lines, indicating a redirection of metabolite flow within phenylpropanoid metabolism. Dilignols derived from coniferyl alcohol such as G(8-5)G, G(8-O-4)G and isodihydrodehydrodiconiferyl alcohol (IDDDC) were substantially depleted, providing evidence for CCR's involvement in coniferyl alcohol biosynthesis. Severe CCR suppression almost halved lignin content in TEs based on a depletion of both H-type and G-type lignin, providing evidence for CCR's involvement in the biosynthesis of both lignin types. 2D-NMR studies revealed minor changes in the H:G-ratio and consequently a largely unchanged interunit linkage distribution in the lignin polymer. However, unusual cell wall components including ferulate and unsaturated fatty acids were identified in TEs by thioacidolysis, pyrolysis-GC/MS and/or 2D-NMR in CCR-RNAi lines, providing new insights into the consequences of CCR suppression in pine. Interestingly, CCR suppression substantially promoted pyrolytic breakdown of cell wall polysaccharides, a phenotype most likely caused by the incorporation of acidic compounds into the cell wall matrix in CCR-RNAi lines.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Nov 1;: 23115000
Elahe Esfandiari, Zhaoqing Jin, Ashraf Abdeen, Jonathan S Griffiths, Tamara L Western, George W Haughn
Botany Department, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, V6T1Z4, Canada.
Differentiation of the Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) seed coat epidermal cells involves pronounced changes highlighted by the synthesis and secretion of copious amounts of dispensable, pectinaceous mucilage followed by a thick cellulosic secondary cell wall. This cell type, therefore, represents an excellent molecular-genetic model to study the biosynthesis and modification of cell wall components, particularly pectin. To support such research, we sought to identify a promoter that drives expression specifically in the Arabidopsis seed coat epidermis. Arabidopsis seed coat microarray data was analysed for genes expressed in the wild type seed coat but not the seed coat of the apetala2 mutant where the epidermal cells fail to differentiate. Of 14 candidate genes, 9 showed a seed-specific expression pattern by reverse transcriptase-PCR. Transcriptional regulatory region-β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene fusions introduced into Arabidopsis identified one promoter, that of the DIRIGENT PROTEIN1 (DP1) gene, as seed coat specific. The specificity of the expression was confirmed using a second reporter gene, Citrine YFP. Expression of both reporter genes was limited to the epidermal and palisade cell layers of the seed coat. Quantitative PCR data using wild type seed coat RNA suggested that the promoter is particularly active at 7 days post anthesis. The DP1 promoter was able to direct transcription of GUS in a similar pattern in the Brassica napus seed coat. Thus, in addition to its application in studying the plant cell wall, this promoter will provide an experimental tool for expressing high-valued recombinant proteins as well as modifying seed coat traits in economically important crops.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Nov 1;: 23114999
Dissecting the molecular basis of the contribution of source strength to high fructan accumulation in wheat.
CSIRO Plant Industry, 306 Carmody Rd., St Lucia, QLD, 4067, Australia, Gang-Ping.Xue@csiro.au.
Fructans represent the major component of water soluble carbohydrates (WSCs) in the maturing stem of temperate cereals and are an important temporary carbon reserve for grain filling. To investigate the importance of source carbon availability in fructan accumulation and its molecular basis, we performed comparative analyses of WSC components and the expression profiles of genes involved in major carbohydrate metabolism and photosynthesis in the flag leaves of recombinant inbred lines from wheat cultivars Seri M82 and Babax (SB lines). High sucrose levels in the mature flag leaf (source organ) were found to be positively associated with WSC and fructan concentrations in both the leaf and stem of SB lines in several field trials. Analysis of Affymetrix expression array data revealed that high leaf sucrose lines grown in abiotic-stress-prone environments had high expression levels of a number of genes in the leaf involved in the sucrose synthetic pathway and photosynthesis, such as Calvin cycle genes, antioxidant genes involved in chloroplast H(2)O(2) removal and genes involved in energy dissipation. The expression of the majority of genes involved in fructan and starch synthetic pathways were positively correlated with sucrose levels in the leaves of SB lines. The high level of leaf fructans in high leaf sucrose lines is likely attributed to the elevated expression levels of fructan synthetic enzymes, as the mRNA levels of three fructosyltransferase families were consistently correlated with leaf sucrose levels among SB lines. These data suggest that high source strength is one of the important genetic factors determining high levels of WSC in wheat.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 31;: 23111501
Functional analysis of splice variant expression of MADS AFFECTING FLOWERING 2 of Arabidopsis thaliana.
Sarah Marie Rosloski, Anandita Singh, Sathya Sheela Jali, Sureshkumar Balasubramanian, Detlef Weigel, Vojislava Grbic
Department of Biology, Western University, London, ON, N6A 5B8, Canada.
The MADS-AFFECTING FLOWERING 2 (MAF2) gene of Arabidopsis thaliana has been characterized as a repressor of flowering. The molecular basis of MAF2 gene function and role of alternative MAF2 transcripts in flowering time modulation is not understood. MAF2 splice variant expression was quantified in cold-acclimated plants by quantitative RT-PCR. Cold influenced the abundance of splice variants and prompted a functional study of splice forms. Individual variants were overexpressed in the Col background and were assayed for their ability to delay flowering. Overexpression of MAF2 variants 2 and 4 had limited effect on flowering time. Overexpression of MAF2 splice variant 1 resulted in early flowering and affected the expression of the endogenous MAF2 gene and its paralogues, confounding functional assessment. In the Ll-2 Arabidopsis accession, a MAF2, MAF3, MAF4 and FLC null line, MAF2 var1 was consistent in its effect on reproductive delay under ambient and reduced temperatures, indicating that it acts as a repressor of flowering.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 30;: 23109182
Shuxin Zhang, Imran Haider, Wouter Kohlen, Li Jiang, Harro Bouwmeester, Annemarie H Meijer, Henriette Schluepmann, Chun-Ming Liu, Pieter B F Ouwerkerk
Key Laboratory of Plant Molecular Physiology, Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100093, China.
Oshox22 belongs to the homeodomain-leucine zipper (HD-Zip) family I of transcription factors, most of which have unknown functions. Here we show that the expression of Oshox22 is strongly induced by salt stress, abscisic acid (ABA), and polyethylene glycol treatment (PEG), and weakly by cold stress. Trans-activation assays in yeast and transient expression analyses in rice protoplasts demonstrated that Oshox22 is able to bind the CAAT(G/C)ATTG element and acts as a transcriptional activator that requires both the HD and Zip domains. Rice plants homozygous for a T-DNA insertion in the promoter region of Oshox22 showed reduced Oshox22 expression and ABA content, decreased sensitivity to ABA, and enhanced tolerance to drought and salt stresses at the seedling stage. In contrast, transgenic rice over-expressing Oshox22 showed increased sensitivity to ABA, increased ABA content, and decreased drought and salt tolerances. Based on these results, we conclude that Oshox22 affects ABA biosynthesis and regulates drought and salt responses through ABA-mediated signal transduction pathways.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 29;: 23103994
Functions of rice NAC transcriptional factors, ONAC122 and ONAC131, in defense responses against Magnaporthe grisea.
Lijun Sun, Huijuan Zhang, Dayong Li, Lei Huang, Yongbo Hong, Xin Shun Ding, Richard S Nelson, Xueping Zhou, Fengming Song
National Key Laboratory for Rice Biology, Institute of Biotechnology, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, 310058, Zhejiang, China.
NAC (NAM/ATAF/CUC) transcription factors have important functions in regulating plant growth, development, and abiotic and biotic stress responses. Here, we characterized two rice pathogen-responsive NAC transcription factors, ONAC122 and ONAC131. We determined that these proteins localized to the nucleus when expressed ectopically and had transcriptional activation activities. ONAC122 and ONAC131 expression was induced after infection by Magnaporthe grisea, the causal agent of rice blast disease, and the M. grisea-induced expression of both genes was faster and higher in the incompatible interaction compared with the compatible interaction during early stages of infection. ONAC122 and ONAC131 were also induced by treatment with salicylic acid, methyl jasmonate or 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (a precursor of ethylene). Silencing ONAC122 or ONAC131 expression using a newly modified Brome mosaic virus (BMV)-based silencing vector resulted in an enhanced susceptibility to M. grisea. Furthermore, expression levels of several other defense- and signaling-related genes (i.e. OsLOX, OsPR1a, OsWRKY45 and OsNH1) were down-regulated in plants silenced for ONAC122 or ONAC131 expression via the BMV-based silencing system. Our results suggest that both ONAC122 and ONAC131 have important roles in rice disease resistance responses through the regulated expression of other defense- and signaling-related genes.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 25;: 23096425
College of Life Sciences, Hebei Normal University, Shijiazhuang, 050024, People's Republic of China.
Leaf senescence is a complex developmental phase that involves both degenerative and nutrient recycling processes. It is characterized by loss of chlorophyll and the degradation of proteins, nucleic acids, lipids, and nutrient remobilization. The onset and progression of leaf senescence are controlled by an array of environmental cues (such as drought, darkness, extreme temperatures, and pathogen attack) and endogenous factors (including age, ethylene, jasmonic acid, salicylic acid, abscisic acid, and cytokinin). This review discusses the major breakthroughs in signal transduction during the onset of leaf senescence, in dark- and drought-mediated leaf senescence, and in various hormones regulating leaf senescence achieved in the past several years. Various signals show different mechanisms of controlling leaf senescence, and cross-talks between different signaling pathways make it more complex. Key senescence regulatory networks still need to be elucidated, including cross-talks and the interaction mechanisms of various environmental signals and internal factors.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 23;: 23090695
Heme oxygenase-1 is involved in nitric oxide- and cGMP-induced α-Amy2/54 gene expression in GA-treated wheat aleurone layers.
College of Life Sciences, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, 210095, People's Republic of China.
Here, α-Amy2/54 gene expression was used as a molecular probe to investigate the interrelationship among nitric oxide (NO), cyclic GMP (cGMP), and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) in GA-treated wheat aleurone layers. The inducible expressions of α-Amy2/54 and α-amylase activity were respectively amplified by two NO-releasing compounds, sodium nitroprusside (SNP) and spermine NONOate, in a GA-dependent fashion. Similar responses were observed when an inducer of HO-1, hemin-or one of its catalytic products, carbon monoxide (CO) in aqueous solution-was respectively added. The SNP-induced responses, mimicked by 8-bromoguanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (8-Br-cGMP), a cGMP derivative, were NO-dependent. This conclusion was supported by the fact that endogenous NO overproduction was rapidly induced by SNP, and thereafter induction of α-Amy2/54 gene expression and increased α-amylase activity were sensitive to the NO scavenger. We further observed that the above induction triggered by SNP and 8-Br-cGMP was partially prevented by zinc protoporphyrin IX (ZnPPIX), an inhibitor of HO-1. These blocking effects were clearly reversed by CO, confirming that the above response was HO-1-specific. Further analyses showed that both SNP and 8-Br-cGMP rapidly up-regulated HO-1 gene expression and increased HO activity, and SNP responses were sensitive to cPTIO and the guanylate cyclase inhibitor 6-anilino-5,8-quinolinedione (LY83583). Molecular evidence confirmed that GA-induced GAMYB and ABA-triggered PKABA1 transcripts were up-regulated or down-regulated by SNP, 8-Br-cGMP or CO cotreated with GA. Contrasting changes were observed when cPTIO, LY83583, or ZnPPIX was added. Together, our results suggested that HO-1 is involved in NO- and cGMP-induced α-Amy2/54 gene expression in GA-treated aleurone layers.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 20;: 23086497
A zinc-binding citrus protein metallothionein can act as a plant defense factor by controlling host-selective ACR-toxin production.
Satoshi Nishimura, Satoshi Tatano, Yoko Miyamoto, Kouhei Ohtani, Takeshi Fukumoto, Kenji Gomi, Yasuomi Tada, Kazuya Ichimura, Kazuya Akimitsu
Faculty of Agriculture, Kagawa University, Miki, Kagawa, 761-0795, Japan.
Metallothionein is a small cysteine-rich protein known to have a metal-binding function. We isolated three different lengths of rough lemon cDNAs encoding a metallothionein (RlemMT1, RlemMT2 and RlemMT3), and only RlemMT1-recombinant protein had zinc-binding activity. Appropriate concentration of zinc is an essential micronutrient for living organisms, while excess zinc is toxic. Zinc also stimulates the production of host-selective ACR-toxin for citrus leaf spot pathogen of Alternaria alternata rough lemon pathotype. Trapping of zinc by RlemMT1-recombinant protein or by a zinc-scavenging agent in the culture medium caused suppression of ACR-toxin production by the fungus. Since ACR-toxin is the disease determinant for A. alternata rough lemon pathotype, addition of RlemMT1 to the inoculum suspension led to a significant decrease in symptoms on rough lemon leaves as a result of reduced ACR-toxin production from the zinc trap around infection sites. RlemMT1-overexpression mutant of A. alternata rough lemon pathotype also produced less ACR-toxin and reduced virulence on rough lemon. This suppression was caused by an interruption of zinc absorption by cells from the trapping of the mineral by RlemMT1 and an excess supplement of ZnSO(4) restored toxin production and pathogenicity. Based on these results, we propose that zinc adsorbents including metallothionein likely can act as a plant defense factor by controlling toxin biosynthesis via inhibition of zinc absorption by the pathogen.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 13;: 23065109
Tobacco Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Qingdao, 266101, China, email@example.com.
The application of systems biology approaches has greatly facilitated the process of deciphering the molecular mechanisms underlying leaf senescence. Analyses of the leaf senescence transcriptome have identified some of the major biochemical events during senescence including protein degradation and nutrient remobilization. Proteomic studies have confirmed these findings and have suggested up-regulated energy metabolism during leaf senescence which might be important for cell viability maintenance. As a critical part of systems biology, studies involving transcription regulation networking and senescence-inducing signaling have deepened our understanding on the molecular regulation of leaf senescence. The important next steps towards a systems biological understanding of leaf senescence will be discussed.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Oct 4;: 23054353
Department of Bioscience and Textile Technology, Shinshu University, Ueda, Nagano, 386-8567, Japan.
Clubroot disease is one of the major diseases affecting Brassicaceae crops, and a number of these crops grown commercially, such as Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa L. ssp. pekinensis), are known to be highly susceptible to clubroot disease. To provide protection from this disease, plant breeders have introduced genes for resistance to clubroot from the European turnip into susceptible lines. The CRa gene confers specific resistance to the clubroot pathogen Plasmodiophora brassicae isolate M85. Fine mapping of the CRa locus using synteny to the Arabidopsis thaliana genome and partial genome sequences of B. rapa revealed a candidate gene encoding a TIR-NBS-LRR protein. Several structural differences in this candidate gene were found between susceptible and resistant lines, and CRa expression was observed only in the resistant line. Four mutant lines lacking clubroot resistance were obtained by the UV irradiation of pollen from a resistant line, and all of these mutant lines carried independent mutations in the candidate TIR-NBS-LRR gene. This genetic and molecular evidence strongly suggests that the identified gene is CRa. This is the first report on the molecular characterization of a clubroot Resistance gene in Brassicaceae and of the disease resistance gene in B. rapa.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Sep 27;: 23015203
Cloning and comparative analysis of carotenoid β-hydroxylase genes provides new insights into carotenoid metabolism in tetraploid (Triticum turgidum ssp. durum) and hexaploid (Triticum aestivum) wheat grains.
Department of Plant Sciences, Mail Stop 3, University of California, Davis, Davis, CA, 95616, USA, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Carotenoid β-hydroxylases attach hydroxyl groups to the β-ionone rings (β-rings) of carotenoid substrates, resulting in modified structures and functions of carotenoid molecules. We cloned and characterized two genes (each with three homeologs), HYD1 and HYD2, which encode β-hydroxylases in wheat. The results from bioinformatic and nested degenerate PCR analyses collectively suggest that HYD1 and HYD2 may represent the entire complement of non-heme di-iron β-hydroxylases in wheat. The homeologs of wheat HYDs exhibited major β-ring and minor ε-ring hydroxylation activities in carotenoid-accumulating E. coli strains. Distinct expression patterns were observed for different HYD genes and homeologs in vegetative tissues and developing grains of tetraploid and hexaploid wheat, suggesting their functional divergence and differential regulatory control in tissue-, grain development-, and ploidy-specific manners. An intriguing observation was that the expression of HYD1, particularly HYD-B1, reached highest levels at the last stage of tetraploid and hexaploid grain development, suggesting that carotenoids (at least xanthophylls) were still actively synthesized in mature grains. This result challenges the common perception that carotenoids are simply being turned over during wheat grain development after their initial biosynthesis at the early grain development stages. Overall, this improved understanding of carotenoid biosynthetic gene expression and carotenoid metabolism in wheat grains will contribute to the improvement of the nutritional value of wheat grains for human consumption.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Sep 27;: 23011401
Shu-Yuan Du, Xiao-Feng Zhang, Zekuan Lu, Qi Xin, Zhen Wu, Tao Jiang, Yan Lu, Xiao-Fang Wang, Da-Peng Zhang
MOE Systems Biology and Bioinformatics Laboratory, School of Life Sciences, Tsinghua University, Beijing, 100084, China.
The H subunit of Mg-chelatase (CHLH) was shown to regulate abscisic acid (ABA) signaling and the I subunit (CHLI) was also reported to modulate ABA signaling in guard cells. However, it remains essentially unknown whether and how the Mg-chelatase-catalyzed Mg-protoporphyrin IX-production differs from ABA signaling. Using a newly-developed surface plasmon resonance system, we showed that ABA binds to CHLH, but not to the other Mg-chelatase components/subunits CHLI, CHLD (D subunit) and GUN4. A new rtl1 mutant allele of the CHLH gene in Arabidopsis thaliana showed ABA-insensitive phenotypes in both stomatal movement and seed germination. Upregulation of CHLI1 resulted in ABA hypersensitivity in seed germination, while downregulation of CHLI conferred ABA insensitivity in stomatal response in Arabidopsis. We showed that CHLH and CHLI, but not CHLD, regulate stomatal sensitivity to ABA in tobacco (Nicotiana benthamiana). The overexpression lines of the CHLD gene showed wild-type ABA sensitivity in Arabidopsis. Both the GUN4-RNA interference and overexpression lines of Arabidopsis showed wild-type phenotypes in the major ABA responses. These findings provide clear evidence that the Mg-chelatase-catalyzed Mg-ProtoIX production is distinct from ABA signaling, giving information to understand the mechanism by which the two cellular processes differs at the molecular level.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Sep 25;: 23007729
Direct interactions of ABA-insensitive(ABI)-clade protein phosphatase(PP)2Cs with calcium-dependent protein kinases and ABA response element-binding bZIPs may contribute to turning off ABA response.
Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology Department, University of California at Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, 93106, USA.
Abscisic acid (ABA) signaling via the pyrabactin-resistant and related (PYR/PYL/RCAR) receptors begins with ABA-dependent inactivation of the ABA-insensitive(ABI)-clade protein phosphatases(PP)2Cs, thereby permitting phosphorylation and activation of the Snf1-related (SnRK)2 clade of protein kinases, and activation of their downstream targets such as ABA-response element binding basic leucine zipper (bZIP) transcription factors (ABF/AREB/ABI5 clade). Several of these are also activated by calcium-dependent protein kinases such as CPK11. Turning off ABA response requires turnover and/or inactivation of these transcription factors, which could result from their dephosphorylation. To address the hypothesis that the ABI-clade PP2Cs regulate the bZIPs directly, in addition to their indirect effects via SnRKs, we have assayed interactions between multiple members of the ABF/AREB clade and the PP2Cs by yeast two-hybrid, in vitro phosphatase, and bimolecular fluorescence complementation assays. In addition, we have expanded the list of documented specific interactions among these bZIP proteins and the kinases that could activate them and found that some PP2Cs can also interact directly with CPK11. These studies support specific interactions among kinases, phosphatases and transcription factors that are co-expressed in early seedling development.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Sep 25;: 23007728
Ectopic expression of a maize calreticulin mitigates calcium deficiency-like disorders in sCAX1-expressing tobacco and tomato.
Department of Horticulture, Forestry and Recreation Resources, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS, 66506, USA.
Deregulated expression of an Arabidopsis H(+)/Ca(2+) antiporter (sCAX1) in agricultural crops increases total calcium (Ca(2+)) but may result in yield losses due to Ca(2+) deficiency-like symptoms. Here we demonstrate that co-expression of a maize calreticulin (CRT, a Ca(2+) binding protein located at endoplasmic reticulum) in sCAX1-expressing tobacco and tomato plants mitigated these adverse effects while maintaining enhanced Ca(2+) content. Co-expression of CRT and sCAX1 could alleviate the hypersensitivity to ion imbalance in tobacco plants. Furthermore, blossom-end rot (BER) in tomato may be linked to changes in CAX activity and enhanced CRT expression mitigated BER in sCAX1 expressing lines. These findings suggest that co-expressing Ca(2+) transporters and binding proteins at different intracellular compartments can alter the content and distribution of Ca(2+) within the plant matrix.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Sep 18;: 22987115
Department of Life Sciences, National Cheng Kung University, No. 1 University Road, 701, Tainan City, Taiwan.
Arsenic (As) is considered the most common toxic metalloid, but its molecular mode of action is not well understood. We investigated whether arsenate [As(V)] can induce intracellular reactive oxygen species production and calcium oscillation in rice roots. To better understand the molecular basis of plant cell responses to As, we performed a large-scale analysis of the rice transcriptome during As(V) stress. As(V) induced genes involved in abiotic stress, detoxification pathways and secondary metabolic process. Genes involved in secondary cell wall biogenesis, cell cycle and oligopeptide transport were mainly downregulated. Genes encoding signalling components such as receptor-like cytoplasmic kinases protein kinase, APETALA2/ethylene response factor, heat shock factor, MYB and zinc-finger protein expressed in inflorescence meristem transcription factors were increased in expression. The expression of GARP-G2-like and C3H transcription factors was specifically modulated by As(V) stress. The predominant families of As(V)-regulated transporters belonged to the ATP-binding cassette superfamily and telurite-resistance/dicarboxylate transporters. Several factors involved in signaling, such as mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), MAPK kinase kinase and calcium-dependent protein kinase (CDPK), were also upregulated. Moreover, As(V) markedly increased the activity of MAPKs and CDPK-like kinases, and CDPK and NADPH oxidases were involved in As-induced MAPK activation. Further characterization of these As(V)-responsive genes and signalling pathways may help better understand the mechanisms of metalloid uptake, tolerance and detoxification in plants.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Sep 15;: 22983713
School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, Main Building Park Place, Cardiff, CF10 3TL, UK, email@example.com.
Floral senescence involves an ordered set of events coordinated at the plant, flower, organ and cellular level. This review assesses our current understanding of the input signals, signal transduction and cellular processes that regulate petal senescence and cell death. In many species a visible sign of petal senescence is wilting. This is accompanied by remobilization of nutrients from the flower to the developing ovary or to other parts of the plant. In other species, petals abscise while still turgid. Coordinating signals for floral senescence also vary across species. In some species ethylene acts as a central regulator, in others floral senescence is ethylene insensitive and other growth regulators are implicated. Due to the variability in this coordination and sequence of events across species, identifying suitable models to study petal senescence has been challenging, and the best candidates are reviewed. Transcriptomic studies provide an overview of the MAP kinases and transcription factors that are activated during petal senescence in several species including Arabidopsis. Our understanding of downstream regulators such as autophagy genes and proteases is also improving. This gives us insights into possible signalling cascades that regulate initiation of senescence and coordination of cell death processes. It also identifies the gaps in our knowledge such as the role of microRNAs. Finally future prospects for using all this information from model to non-model species to extend vase life in ornamental species is reviewed.
Plant Mol Biol. 2012 Sep 11;: 22965278
Functional characterization of the recombinant HIV-neutralizing monoclonal antibody 2F5 produced in maize seeds.
Departament de Produccio Vegetal I Ciencia Forestal (PVCF), Universitat de Lleida-Agrotecnio Center, Av. Alcalde Rovira Roure, 177, 25198, Lleida, Spain, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) that neutralize human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can be used as microbicides to help prevent the spread of HIV in human populations. As an industry standard, HIV-neutralizing mAbs are produced as recombinant proteins in mammalian cells, but the high manufacturing costs and limited capacity reduce the ability of target populations in developing countries to gain access to these potentially life-saving medicines. Plants offer a more cost-effective and deployable production platform because they can be grown inexpensively and on a large scale in the region where the products are required. Here we show that the maize-derived HIV-neutralizing mAb 2F5 is assembled correctly in planta and binds to its antigen with the same affinity as 2F5 produced in mammalian cells. Although 2F5 has been produced at high levels in non-plant platforms, the yield in maize seeds is lower than previously achieved with another HIV-neutralizing mAb, 2G12. This suggests that the intrinsic properties of the antibody (e.g. sensitivity to specific proteases) and the environment provided by the production host (e.g. the relative abundance of different proteases, potential transgene silencing) may combine to limit the accumulation of some antibodies on a case-by-case basis.