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Journal Cover Plant Molecular Biology
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   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
     ISSN (Print) 1573-5028 - ISSN (Online) 0167-4412
     Published by Springer-Verlag Homepage  [2207 journals]   [SJR: 1.769]   [H-I: 112]
  • Pisum sativum p68
           DEAD-box protein is ATP-dependent RNA helicase and unique bipolar DNA
    • Abstract: Abstract DEAD-box helicases play essential role in DNA and RNA metabolism such as replication, repair, recombination, transcription, translation, ribosome biogenesis and splicing which regulate plant growth and development. The presence of helicases in the stress-induced ORFs identified by cDNA microarray indicates that helicases might be playing an important role in stabilizing growth in plants under stress. p68 DEAD-box helicase has been identified and characterized from animal systems but the properties and functions of plant p68 are poorly understood. In this study, the identification, purification and characterization of recombinant p68 from Pisum sativum (Psp68) is presented. Psp68 possesses all the characteristic motifs like DEAD-box ATP-binding and helicase C terminal motifs and is structurally similar to human p68 homologue. Psp68 exhibits ATPase activity in the presence of both DNA and RNA and it binds to DNA as well as RNA. It contains the characteristic RNA helicase activity. Interestingly Psp68 also shows the unique DNA helicase activity, which is bipolar in nature (unwinds DNA in both the 5′–3′ and 3′–5′ directions). The Km values of Psp68 for ATPase are 0.5126 and 0.9142 mM in the presence of DNA and RNA, respectively. The Km values of Psp68 are 1.6129 and 1.14 nM for DNA helicase and RNA helicase, respectively. The unique properties of Psp68 suggest that it could be a multifunctional protein involved in different aspect of DNA and RNA metabolism. This discovery should make an important contribution to better understanding of nucleic acids metabolism plants.
      PubDate: 2014-08-01
  • The PSI family of nuclear proteins is required for growth in arabidopsis
    • Abstract: Abstract PSI1 was identified as a gene that is co-expressed with the phytosulfokine (PSK) receptor genes PSKR1 and PSKR2 in Arabidopsis thaliana. It represents a plant-specific protein family of unknown function with six members in two clades. Clade 1 members PSI1, PSI2 and PSI3 were characterized in this study. All three are nuclear localized. A predicted N-terminal myristoylation site was functionally analyzed. psi1-1 seedlings have shorter roots and hypocotyls. This growth-retarded phenotype was restored by expression of either wildtype PSI1 or PSI1 G2A with a mutated myristate attachment site in the psi1-1 background suggesting that myristate attachment was not essential for PSI1 function. psi2-1 and psi3-1 seedlings have a wildtype phenotype but overexpression of PSI1 or PSI2 promoted seedling growth. PSI2 activity appears to be linked to PSK signaling as psi2-1 and psi2-1 psi3-1 roots are unresponsive to PSK. PSI3 functions in vegetative plant growth synergistic with PSI2. psi3-1 and particularly psi2-1 psi3-1 rosettes are small. Overexpression of PSI3 promoted plant growth indicating that PSI3 is limiting at the vegetative stage. Severe dwarfism of psi2-1 psi3-1 plants results from reduced cell growth and proliferation and premature leaf growth arrest. Plants further display reduced fertility and premature senescence revealing a crucial function of PSI proteins in vegetative growth and reproduction. Psi single and double knock-out plants have less and PSI3ox plants have more starch compared to wt and growth retardation is partially rescued by sucrose. Our studies reveal a crucial function of the nuclear-localized PSI proteins in growth possibly through metabolic control.
      PubDate: 2014-07-26
  • Genomic profiling of rice roots with short- and long-term chromium stress
    • Abstract: Abstract Cr(VI) is the most toxic valency form of Cr, but its toxicity targets and the cellular systems contributing to acquisition of tolerance remain to be resolved at the molecular level in plants. We used microarray assay to analyze the transcriptomic profiles of rice roots in response to Cr(VI) stress. Gene ontology analysis revealed that the 2,688 Cr-responsive genes were involved in binding activity, metabolic process, biological regulation, cellular process and catalytic activity. More transcripts were responsive to Cr(VI) during long-term exposure (24 h, 2,097 genes), than short-term exposure (1- and 3-h results pooled, 1,181 genes). Long-term Cr(VI)-regulated genes are involved in cytokinin signaling, the ubiquitin–proteasome system pathway, DNA repair and Cu transportation. The expression of AS2 transcription factors was specifically modulated by long-term Cr(VI) stress. The protein kinases receptor-like cytoplasmic kinase and receptor-like kinase in flowers 3 were significantly upregulated with only short-term Cr(VI) exposure. In addition, 4 mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinases, 1 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and 1 calcium-dependent protein kinase (CDPK) were upregulated with short-term Cr(VI) treatment. Expression of reactive oxygen species and calcium and activity of MAPKs and CDPK-like kinases were induced with increasing Cr(VI) concentration. These results may provide new insights into understanding the mechanisms of Cr toxicity and tolerance during different stages in rice roots.
      PubDate: 2014-07-24
  • Increased expression of Fe-chelatase leads to increased metabolic flux
           into heme and confers protection against photodynamically induced
           oxidative stress
    • Abstract: Abstract Fe-chelatase (FeCh, EC inserts Fe2+ into protoporphyrin IX (Proto IX) to form heme, which influences the flux through the tetrapyrrole biosynthetic pathway as well as fundamental cellular processes. In transgenic rice (Oryza sativa), the ectopic expression of Bradyrhizobium japonicum FeCh protein in cytosol results in a substantial increase of FeCh activity compared to wild-type (WT) rice and an increasing level of heme. Interestingly, the transgenic rice plants showed resistance to oxidative stress caused not only by the peroxidizing herbicide acifluorfen (AF) as indicated by a reduced formation of leaf necrosis, a lower conductivity, lower malondialdehyde and H2O2 contents as well as sustained Fv/Fm compared to WT plants, but also by norflurazon, paraquat, salt, and polyethylene glycol. Moreover, the transgenic plants responded to AF treatment with markedly increasing FeCh activity. The accompanying increases in heme content and heme oxygenase activity demonstrate that increased heme metabolism attenuates effects of oxidative stress caused by accumulating porphyrins. These findings suggest that increases in heme levels and porphyrin scavenging capacity support a detoxification mechanism serving against porphyrin-induced oxidative stress. This study also implicates heme as possibly being a positive signal in plant stress responses.
      PubDate: 2014-07-19
  • WRKY45-dependent priming of diterpenoid phytoalexin biosynthesis in rice
           and the role of cytokinin in triggering the reaction
    • Abstract: Abstract Plant activators such as benzothiadiazole (BTH) protect plants against diseases by priming the salicylic acid (SA) signaling pathway. In rice, the transcription factor WRKY45 plays a central role in this process. To investigate the mechanism involved in defense-priming by BTH and the role of WRKY45 in this process, we analyzed the transcripts of biosynthetic genes for diterpenoid phytoalexins (DPs) during the rice–Magnaporthe oryzae interaction. The DP biosynthetic genes were barely upregulated in BTH-treated rice plants, but were induced rapidly after M. oryzae infection in a WRKY45-dependent manner. These results indicate that the DP biosynthetic genes were primed by BTH through WRKY45. Rapid induction of the DP biosynthetic genes was also observed after M. oryzae infection to WRKY45-overexpressing (WRKY45-ox) plants. The changes in gene transcription resulted in accumulation of DPs in WRKY45-ox and BTH-pretreated rice after M. oryzae infection. Previously, we reported that cytokinins (CKs), especially isopentenyladenines, accumulated in M. oryzae-infected rice. Here, we show that DP biosynthetic genes are regulated by the SA/CK synergism in a WRKY45-dependent manner. Together, we propose that CK plays a role in mediating the signal of M. oryzae infection to trigger the induction of DP biosynthetic genes in BTH-primed plants.
      PubDate: 2014-07-18
  • Ectopic expression of        class="a-plus-plus">CaRLK1 enhances hypoxia
           tolerance with increasing alanine production in        class="a-plus-plus">Nicotiana spp.
    • Abstract: Abstract In a previous report, the pepper receptor-like kinase 1 (CaRLK1) gene was shown to be responsible for negatively regulating plant cell death caused by pathogens via accumulation of superoxide anions. Here, we examined whether this gene also plays a role in regulating cell death under abiotic stress. The total concentrations of free amino acids in CaRLK1-overexpressed cells (RLKox) increased by twofold compared with those of the wild-type Nicotiana tabacum BY-2 cells. Additionally, alanine and pyruvate concentrations increased by approximately threefold. These accumulations were associated with both the expression levels of the isocitrate lyase (ICL) and malate synthase genes and their specific activities, which were preferentially up-regulated in the RLKox cells. The expression levels of ethylene biosynthetic genes (ACC synthase and ACC oxidase) were suppressed, but those of both the metallothionein and lesion simulating disease 1 genes increased in the RLKox cells during submergence-induced hypoxia. The specific activity of catalase, which is involved in protecting ICL from reactive oxygen species, was also induced threefold in the RLKox cells. The primary roots of the transgenic plants that were exposed to hypoxic conditions grew at similar rates to those in normal conditions. We propose that CaRLK1 maintains a persistent hypoxia-resistant phenotype.
      PubDate: 2014-07-17
  • Artificial microRNA mediated gene silencing in plants: progress and
    • Abstract: Abstract Homology based gene silencing has emerged as a convenient approach for repressing expression of genes in order to study their functions. For this purpose, several antisense or small interfering RNA based gene silencing techniques have been frequently employed in plant research. Artificial microRNAs (amiRNAs) mediated gene silencing represents one of such techniques which can utilize as a potential tool in functional genomics. Similar to microRNAs, amiRNAs are single-stranded, approximately 21 nt long, and designed by replacing the mature miRNA sequences of duplex within pre-miRNAs. These amiRNAs are processed via small RNA biogenesis and silencing machinery and deregulate target expression. Holding to various refinements, amiRNA technology offers several advantages over other gene silencing methods. This is a powerful and robust tool, and could be applied to unravel new insight of metabolic pathways and gene functions across the various disciplines as well as in translating observations for improving favourable traits in plants. This review highlights general background of small RNAs, improvements made in RNAi based gene silencing, implications of amiRNA in gene silencing, and describes future themes for improving value of this technology in plant science.
      PubDate: 2014-07-15
  • Identification and characterization of CYP79D16 and CYP71AN24 catalyzing
           the first and second steps in        type-small-caps">l-phenylalanine-derived cyanogenic
           glycoside biosynthesis in the Japanese apricot,        class="a-plus-plus">Prunus mume Sieb. et Zucc.
    • Abstract: Abstract Japanese apricot, Prunus mume Sieb. et Zucc., belonging to the Rosaceae family, produces as defensive agents the cyanogenic glycosides prunasin and amygdalin, which are presumably derived from l-phenylalanine. In this study, we identified and characterized cytochrome P450s catalyzing the conversion of l-phenylalanine into mandelonitrile via phenylacetaldoxime. Full-length cDNAs encoding CYP79D16, CYP79A68, CYP71AN24, CYP71AP13, CYP71AU50, and CYP736A117 were cloned from P. mume ‘Nanko’ using publicly available P. mume RNA-sequencing data, followed by 5′- and 3′-RACE. CYP79D16 was expressed in seedlings, whereas CYP71AN24 was expressed in seedlings and leaves. Enzyme activity of these cytochrome P450s expressed in Saccharomyces cerevisiae was evaluated by liquid and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. CYP79D16, but not CYP79A68, catalyzed the conversion of l-phenylalanine into phenylacetaldoxime. CYP79D16 showed no activity toward other amino acids. CYP71AN24, but not CYP71AP13, CYP71AU50, and CYP736A117, catalyzed the conversion of phenylacetaldoxime into mandelonitrile. CYP71AN24 also showed lower conversions of various aromatic aldoximes and nitriles. The K m value and turnover rate of CYP71AN24 for phenylacetaldoxime were 3.9 µM and 46.3 min−1, respectively. The K m value and turnover of CYP71AN24 may cause the efficient metabolism of phenylacetaldoxime, avoiding the release of the toxic intermediate to the cytosol. These results suggest that cyanogenic glycoside biosynthesis in P. mume is regulated in concert with catalysis by CYP79D16 in the parental and sequential reaction of CYP71AN24 in the seedling.
      PubDate: 2014-07-12
  • Interaction between the transcription factor AtTIFY4B and begomovirus AL2
           protein impacts pathogenicity
    • Abstract: Abstract The begomovirus AL2 protein is a transcriptional activator, a silencing suppressor, and inhibitor of basal defense. AL2 forms a complex at the CP promoter, through interaction with a plant-specific DNA-binding protein, Arabidopsis PEAPOD2 (also known as TIFY4B). AtTIFY4B has three domains (PPD, TIFY and CCT_2) conserved between homologs from different plant species. We confirmed that the AL2 protein from Tomato golden mosaic virus and Cabbage leaf curl virus interacts with TIFY4B from Arabidopsis, tomato and Nicotiana benthamiana in the nucleus of plant cells. Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation demonstrated that the interaction involves both the TIFY and CCT_2 domains. Surprisingly, amino acids 84–150 can prevent AtTIFY4B from localizing to the nucleus, and interaction with AL2 results in some of the protein re-entering the nucleus. When AtTIFY4B is over-expressed, we observe an increase in mean latent period, where systemic symptoms are detected on average, 4 days later than in mock treated plants. This appears to be a consequence of reduced viral DNA titers, possibly related to the role of TIFY4B in cell cycle arrest. Our results point to a potential role for TIFY4B in host defense against geminiviruses. Expression of TIFY4B in N. benthamiana increases in response to geminivirus infection, which would result in suppression of proliferation, reducing viral replication. Geminiviruses may counter this defense response through an interaction between AL2 and TIFY4B, which would inhibit TIY4B function. The consequence of this inhibition would be failure to arrest the cell cycle, providing an environment conducive for geminivirus replication.
      PubDate: 2014-07-11
  • A viable Arabidopsis
    missense allele confers severe peroxisomal defects and
           decreases PEX5 association with peroxisomes
    • Abstract: Abstract Peroxisomes are organelles that catabolize fatty acids and compartmentalize other oxidative metabolic processes in eukaryotes. Using a forward-genetic screen designed to recover severe peroxisome-defective mutants, we isolated a viable allele of the peroxisome biogenesis gene PEX13 with striking peroxisomal defects. The pex13-4 mutant requires an exogenous source of fixed carbon for pre-photosynthetic development and is resistant to the protoauxin indole-3-butyric acid. Delivery of peroxisome-targeted matrix proteins depends on the PEX5 receptor docking with PEX13 at the peroxisomal membrane, and we found severely reduced import of matrix proteins and less organelle-associated PEX5 in pex13-4 seedlings. Moreover, pex13-4 physiological and molecular defects were partially ameliorated when PEX5 was overexpressed, suggesting that PEX5 docking is partially compromised in this mutant and can be improved by increasing PEX5 levels. Because previously described Arabidopsis pex13 alleles either are lethal or confer only subtle defects, the pex13-4 mutant provides valuable insight into plant peroxisome receptor docking and matrix protein import.
      PubDate: 2014-07-10
  • Major alterations in transcript profiles between C       class="a-plus-plus">3–C       class="a-plus-plus">4 and C       class="a-plus-plus">4 photosynthesis of an
           amphibious species Eleocharis
    • Abstract: Abstract Engineering C4 photosynthetic metabolism into C3 crops is regarded as a major strategy to increase crop productivity, and clarification of the evolutionary processes of C4 photosynthesis can help the better use of this strategy. Here, Eleocharis baldwinii, a species in which C4 photosynthesis can be induced from a C3 –C4 state under either environmental or ABA treatments, was used to identify the major transcriptional modifications during the process from C3 –C4 to C4. The transcriptomic comparison suggested that in addition to the major differences in C4 core pathway, the pathways of glycolysis, citrate acid metabolism and protein synthesis were dramatically modified during the inducement of C4 photosynthetic states. Transcripts of many transporters, including not only metabolite transporters but also ion transporters, were dramatically increased in C4 photosynthetic state. Many candidate regulatory genes with unidentified functions were differentially expressed in C3 –C4 and C4 photosynthetic states. Finally, it was indicated that ABA, auxin signaling and DNA methylation play critical roles in the regulation of C4 photosynthesis. In summary, by studying the different photosynthetic states of the same species, this work provides the major transcriptional differences between C3 –C4 and C4 photosynthesis, and many of the transcriptional differences are potentially related to C4 development and therefore are the potential targets for reverse genetics studies.
      PubDate: 2014-07-10
  • Comparison of the physiological effects and transcriptome responses of
           Populus simonii under
           different abiotic stresses
    • Abstract: Abstract In the field, perennial plants such as poplar (Populus spp.) must adapt to simultaneous exposure to various abiotic stresses, which can affect their growth and survival. However, the mechanisms for stress-specific adaption in response to different abiotic stresses remain unclear. Thus, understanding the unique acclimation process for each abiotic treatment will require a comprehensive and systematic comparison of the responses of poplar to different abiotic stresses. To compare the responses to multiple stresses, we compared physiological effects and transcriptome changes in poplar under four abiotic stresses (salinity, osmotic, heat and cold). Photosynthesis and antioxidant enzymes changed significantly after 6 h abiotic stress treatment. Therefore, using 6 h abiotic stress treatment groups for transcriptome analysis, we identified a set of 863 differentially expressed genes (653 up-regulated and 210 down-regulated) common to osmotic, salinity, heat and cold treatment. We also identified genes specific to osmotic (1,739), salinity (1,222), cold (2,508) and heat (3,200), revealing that salinity stress has the fewest differently-expressed genes. After gene annotation, we found differences in expression of genes related to electron transport, stomatal control, antioxidant enzymes, cell wall alteration, and phytohormone biosynthesis and signaling in response to various abiotic stresses. This study provides new insights to improve our understanding of the mechanisms by which poplar adapts under different abiotic stress conditions and provides new clues for further studies.
      PubDate: 2014-07-08
  • Expression of a gene encoding a rice RING zinc-finger protein, OsRZFP34,
           enhances stomata opening
    • Abstract: Abstract By oligo microarray expression profiling, we identified a rice RING zinc-finger protein (RZFP), OsRZFP34, whose gene expression increased with high temperature or abscisic acid (ABA) treatment. As compared with the wild type, rice and Arabidopsis with OsRZFP34 overexpression showed increased relative stomata opening even with ABA treatment. Furthermore, loss-of-function mutation of OsRZFP34 and AtRZFP34 (At5g22920), an OsRZFP34 homolog in Arabidopsis, decreased relative stomata aperture under nonstress control conditions. Expressing OsRZFP34 in atrzfp34 reverted the mutant phenotype to normal, which indicates a conserved molecular function between OsRZFP34 and AtRZFP34. Analysis of water loss and leaf temperature under stress conditions revealed a higher evaporation rate and cooling effect in OsRZFP34-overexpressing Arabidopsis and rice than the wild type, atrzfp34 and osrzfp34. Thus, stomata opening, enhanced leaf cooling, and ABA insensitivity was conserved with OsRZFP34 expression. Transcription profiling of transgenic rice overexpressing OsRZFP34 revealed many genes involved in OsRZFP34-mediated stomatal movement. Several genes upregulated or downregulated in OsRZFP34-overexpressing plants were previously implicated in Ca2+ sensing, K+ regulator, and ABA response. We suggest that OsRZFP34 may modulate these genes to control stomata opening.
      PubDate: 2014-07-08
  • Diverse roles of PtrDUF579 proteins in        class="a-plus-plus">Populus and PtrDUF579-1
           function in vascular cambium proliferation during secondary growth
    • Abstract: Abstract DUF579 (domain of unknown function 579) family proteins contain a DUF579 domain structure but vary greatly in their overall sequence similarity. Several DUF579 proteins have been found to play a role in cell wall biosynthesis in Arabidopsis, while DUF579 family genes have not yet been systematically investigated in Populus. In this study, the Populus DUF579 family proteins were found to be localized in different cell types and subcellular locations. The diverse expression patterns of the proteins indicate that they may perform different functions in Populus. Among the DUF579 family members, PtrDUF579-1 is found to be specifically expressed in vascular cambium zone cells where it is localized in the Golgi apparatus. Suppression of PtrDUF579-1 expression reduced plant height and stem diameter size. Cambium cell division and xylem tissue growth was inhibited while secondary cell wall formation was unchanged in PtrDUF579-1 suppressed plants. Cell walls analysis showed that the composition of the pectin fraction of the cambium cell wall was altered while other polysaccharides were not affected in PtrDUF579-1 suppressed plants. This observation suggest cambium expressed PtrDUF579-1 may affect cell wall biosynthesis and be involved in cambium cell proliferation in Populus. Overall, DUF579 family proteins play a diverse set of roles in Populus.
      PubDate: 2014-06-05
  • The transcriptional response of apple alcohol acyltransferase (MdAAT2) to
           salicylic acid and ethylene is mediated through two apple MYB TFs in
           transgenic tobacco
    • Abstract: Abstract Volatile esters are major factors affecting the aroma of apple fruits, and alcohol acyltransferases (AATs) are key enzymes involved in the last steps of ester biosynthesis. The expression of apple AAT (MdAAT2) is known to be induced by salicylic acid (SA) or ethylene in apple fruits, although the mechanism of its transcriptional regulation remains elusive. In this study, we reveal that two apple transcription factors (TFs), MdMYB1 and MdMYB6, are involved in MdAAT2 promoter response to SA and ethylene in transgenic tobacco. According to electrophoretic mobility shift assays, MdMYB1 or MdMYB6 can directly bind in vitro to MYB binding sites in the MdAAT2 promoter. In vivo, overexpression of the two MYB TFs can greatly enhance MdAAT2 promoter activity, as demonstrated by dual luciferase reporter assays in transgenic tobacco. In contrast to the promoter of MdMYB1 or MdMYB6, the MdAAT2 promoter cannot be induced by SA or ethephon (ETH) in transgenic tobacco, even in stigmas in which the MdAAT2 promoter can be highly induced under normal conditions. However, the induced MYB TFs can dramatically enhance MdAAT2 promoter activity under SA or ETH treatment. We conclude that MdMYB1 and MdMYB6 function in MdAAT2 responses to SA and ethylene in transgenic tobacco, suggesting that a similar regulation mechanism may exist in apple.
      PubDate: 2014-06-04
  • Down-regulating annexin gene        class="a-plus-plus">GhAnn2 inhibits cotton fiber
           elongation and decreases Ca       class="a-plus-plus">2+ influx at the cell apex
    • Abstract: Abstract Cotton fiber is a single cell that differentiates from the ovule epidermis and undergoes synchronous elongation with high secretion and growth rate. Apart from economic importance, cotton fiber provides an excellent single-celled model for studying mechanisms of cell-growth. Annexins are Ca2+- and phospholipid-binding proteins that have been reported to be localized in multiple cellular compartments and involved in control of vesicle secretions. Although several annexins have been found to be highly expressed in elongating cotton fibers, their functional roles in fiber development remain unknown. Here, 14 annexin family members were identified from the fully sequenced diploid G. raimondii (D5 genome), half of which were expressed in fibers of the cultivated tetraploid species G. hirsutum (cv. YZ1). Among them, GhAnn2 from the D genome of the tetraploid species displayed high expression level in elongating fiber. The expression of GhAnn2 could be induced by some phytohormones that play important roles in fiber elongation, such as IAA and GA3. RNAi-mediated down-regulation of GhAnn2 inhibited fiber elongation and secondary cell wall synthesis, resulting in shorter and thinner mature fibers in the transgenic plants. Measurement with non-invasive scanning ion-selective electrode revealed that the rate of Ca2+ influx from extracellular to intracellular was decreased at the fiber cell apex of GhAnn2 silencing lines, in comparison to that in the wild type. These results indicate that GhAnn2 may regulate fiber development through modulating Ca2+ fluxes and signaling.
      PubDate: 2014-06-03
  • Overexpression of a tea flavanone 3-hydroxylase gene confers tolerance to
           salt stress and Alternaria
    in transgenic tobacco
    • Abstract: Abstract Flavan-3-ols are the major flavonoids present in tea (Camellia sinensis) leaves. These are known to have antioxidant and free radical scavenging properties in vitro. Flavanone 3-hydroxylase is considered to be an important enzyme of flavonoid pathway leading to accumulation of flavan-3-ols in tea. Expression analysis revealed the upregulation in transcript levels of C. sinensis flavanone 3-hydroxylase (CsF3H) encoding gene under salt stress. In this study, the biotechnological potential of CsF3H was evaluated by gene overexpression in tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum cv. Xanthi). Overexpression of CsF3H cDNA increased the content of flavan-3-ols in tobacco and conferred tolerance to salt stress and fungus Alternaria solani infection. Transgenic tobaccos were observed for increase in primary root length, number of lateral roots, chlorophyll content, antioxidant enzyme expression and their activities. Also, they showed lesser malondialdehyde content and electrolyte leakage compared to control tobacco plants. Further, transgenic plants produced higher degree of pectin methyl esterification via decreasing pectin methyl esterase (PME) activity in roots and leaves under unstressed and salt stressed conditions. The effect of flavan-3-ols on pectin methyl esterification under salt stressed conditions was further validated through in vitro experiments in which non-transgenic (wild) tobacco seedlings were exposed to salt stress in presence of flavan-3-ols, epicatechin and epigallocatechin. The in vitro exposed seedlings showed similar trend of increase in pectin methyl esterification through decreasing PME activity as observed in CsF3H transgenic lines. Taken together, overexpression of CsF3H provided tolerance to salt stress and fungus A. solani infection to transgenic tobacco through improved antioxidant system and enhanced pectin methyl esterification.
      PubDate: 2014-06-01
  • Sequence comparison and phylogenetic analysis by the Maximum Likelihood
           method of ribosome-inactivating proteins from angiosperms
    • Abstract: Abstract Ribosome-inactivating proteins (RIPs) from angiosperms are rRNA N-glycosidases that have been proposed as defence proteins against virus and fungi. They have been classified as type 1 RIPs, consisting of single-chain proteins, and type 2 RIPs, consisting of an A chain with RIP properties covalently linked to a B chain with lectin properties. In this work we have carried out a broad search of RIP sequence data banks from angiosperms in order to study their main structural characteristics and phylogenetic evolution. The comparison of the sequences revealed the presence, outside of the active site, of a novel structure that might be involved in the internal protein dynamics linked to enzyme catalysis. Also the B-chains presented another conserved structure that might function either supporting the beta-trefoil structure or in the communication between both sugar-binding sites. A systematic phylogenetic analysis of RIP sequences revealed that the most primitive type 1 RIPs were similar to that of the actual monocots (Poaceae and Asparagaceae). The primitive RIPs evolved to the dicot type 1 related RIPs (like those from Caryophyllales, Lamiales and Euphorbiales). The gene of a type 1 RIP related with the actual Euphorbiaceae type 1 RIPs fused with a double beta trefoil lectin gene similar to the actual Cucurbitaceae lectins to generate the type 2 RIPs and finally this gene underwent deletions rendering either type 1 RIPs (like those from Cucurbitaceae, Rosaceae and Iridaceae) or lectins without A chain (like those from Adoxaceae).
      PubDate: 2014-06-01
  • Identification of direct targets of transcription factor MYB46 provides
           insights into the transcriptional regulation of secondary wall
    • Abstract: Abstract Secondary wall formation requires coordinated transcriptional regulation of the genes involved in the biosynthesis of the components of secondary wall. Transcription factor (TF) MYB46 (At5g12870) has been shown to function as a central regulator for secondary wall formation in Arabidopsis thaliana, activating biosynthetic genes as well as the TFs involved in the pathways. Recently, we reported that MYB46 directly regulates secondary wall-associated cellulose synthase (CESA4, CESA7, and CESA8) and a mannan synthase (CSLA9) genes. However, it is not known whether MYB46 directly activates the biosynthetic genes for hemicellulose and lignin, which are the other two major components of secondary wall. Based on the observations that the promoter regions of many of the secondary wall biosynthetic genes contain MYB46-binding cis-regulatory motif(s), we hypothesized that MYB46 directly regulates the genes involved in the biosynthesis of the secondary wall components. In this report, we describe several lines of experimental evidence in support of the hypothesis. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay and chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis showed that MYB46 directly binds to the promoters of 13 genes involved in lignin and xylan biosynthesis. We then used steroid receptor-based inducible activation system to confirm that MYB46 directly activates the transcription of the xylan and lignin biosynthetic genes. Furthermore, ectopic up-regulation of MYB46 resulted in a significant increase in xylose and a small increase in lignin content based on acetyl bromide soluble lignin measurements in Arabidopsis. Taken together, we conclude that MYB46 function as a central and direct regulator of the genes involved in the biosynthesis of all three major secondary wall components.
      PubDate: 2014-05-31
  • Heat shock factor HSFB2a involved in gametophyte development of        class="a-plus-plus">Arabidopsis thaliana and its
           expression is controlled by a heat-inducible long non-coding antisense RNA
    • Abstract: Abstract Heat stress transcription factors (HSFs) are central regulators of the heat stress response. Plant HSFs of subgroup B lack a conserved sequence motif present in the transcriptional activation domain of class A-HSFs. Arabidopsis members were found to be involved in non-heat shock functions. In the present analysis we investigated the expression, regulation and function of HSFB2a. HSFB2a expression was counteracted by a natural long non-coding antisense RNA, asHSFB2a. In leaves, the antisense RNA gene is only expressed after heat stress and dependent on the activity of HSFA1a/HSFA1b. HSFB2a and asHSFB2a RNAs were also present in the absence of heat stress in the female gametophyte. Transgenic overexpression of HSFB2a resulted in a complete knock down of the asHSFB2a expression. Conversely, asHSFB2a overexpression leads to the absence of HSFB2a RNA. The knockdown of HSFB2a by asHSFB2a correlated with an improved, knockdown of asHSFB2a by HSFB2a overexpression with an impaired biomass production early in vegetative development. In both cases the development of female gametophytes was impaired. A T-DNA knock-out line did not segregate homozygous mutant plants, only heterozygots hsfB2a-tt1/+ were viable. Approximately 50 % of the female gametophytes were arrested in early development, before mitosis 3, resulting in 45 % of sterile ovules. Our analysis indicates that the “Yin–Yang” regulation of gene expression at the HSFB2a locus influences vegetative and gametophytic development in Arabidopsis.
      PubDate: 2014-05-30
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