(25/17430) Overexpression of a novel Arabidopsis gene related to putative zinc-transporter genes from animals can lead to enhanced zinc resistance and accumulation.

We describe the isolation of an Arabidopsis gene that is closely related to the animal ZnT genes (Zn transporter). The protein encoded by the ZAT (Zn transporter of Arabidopsis thaliana) gene has 398 amino acid residues and is predicted to have six membrane-spanning domains. To obtain evidence for the postulated function of the Arabidopsis gene, transgenic plants with the ZAT coding sequence under control of the cauliflower mosaic virus 35S promoter were analyzed. Plants obtained with ZAT in the sense orientation exhibited enhanced Zn resistance and strongly increased Zn content in the roots under high Zn exposure. Antisense mRNA-producing plants were viable, with a wild-type level of Zn resistance and content, like plants expressing a truncated coding sequence lacking the C-terminal cytoplasmic domain of the protein. The availability of ZAT can lead to a better understanding of the mechanism of Zn homeostasis and resistance in plants.  (+info)

(26/17430) Cell-to-cell and long-distance trafficking of the green fluorescent protein in the phloem and symplastic unloading of the protein into sink tissues.

Macromolecular trafficking within the sieve element-companion cell complex, phloem unloading, and post-phloem transport were studied using the jellyfish green fluorescent protein (GFP). The GFP gene was expressed in Arabidopsis and tobacco under the control of the AtSUC2 promoter. In wild-type Arabidopsis plants, this promoter regulates expression of the companion cell-specific AtSUC2 sucrose-H+ symporter gene. Analyses of the AtSUC2 promoter-GFP plants demonstrated that the 27-kD GFP protein can traffic through plasmodesmata from companion cells into sieve elements and migrate within the phloem. With the stream of assimilates, the GFP is partitioned between different sinks, such as petals, root tips, anthers, funiculi, or young rosette leaves. Eventually, the GFP can be unloaded symplastically from the phloem into sink tissues, such as the seed coat, the anther connective tissue, cells of the root tip, and sink leaf mesophyll cells. In all of these tissues, the GFP can traffic cell to cell by symplastic post-phloem transport. The presented data show that plasmodesmata of the sieve element-companion cell complex, as well as plasmodesmata into and within the analyzed sinks, allow trafficking of the 27-kD nonphloem GFP protein. The data also show that the size exclusion limit of plasmodesmata can change during organ development. The results are also discussed in terms of the phloem mobility of assimilates and of small, low molecular weight companion cell proteins.  (+info)

(27/17430) The DNA binding site of the Dof protein NtBBF1 is essential for tissue-specific and auxin-regulated expression of the rolB oncogene in plants.

The Dof proteins are a large family of plant transcription factors that share a single highly conserved zinc finger. The tobacco Dof protein NtBBF1 was identified by its ability to bind to regulatory domain B in the promoter of the rolB oncogene. In this study, we show that the ACT T TA target sequence of NtBBF1 in domain B is necessary for tissue-specific expression of rolB. beta-Glucuronidase (GUS) activity of tobacco plants containing a rolB promoter-GUS fusion with a mutated NtBBF1 target sequence within domain B is almost completely suppressed in apical meristems and is severely abated in the vascular system. The ACT T TA motif is shown here also to be one of the cis-regulatory elements involved in auxin induction of rolB. The pattern of NtBBF1 expression in plants is remarkably similar to that of rolB, except in mesophyll cells of mature leaves, in which only NtBBF1 expression could be detected. Ectopic expression of rolB in mesophyll cells was achieved by particle gun delivery if the NtBBF1 binding sequence was intact. These data provide evidence that in the plant, a Dof protein DNA binding sequence acts as a transcriptional regulatory motif, and they point to NtBBF1 as the protein involved in mediating tissue-specific and auxin-inducible expression of rolB.  (+info)

(28/17430) Discrete domains mediate the light-responsive nuclear and cytoplasmic localization of Arabidopsis COP1.

The Arabidopsis CONSTITUTIVE PHOTOMORPHOGENIC1 (COP1) protein plays a critical role in the repression of photomorphogenesis during Arabidopsis seedling development. We investigated the control of COP1 partitioning between nucleus and cytoplasm, which has been implicated in the regulation of COP1 activity, by using fusion proteins between COP1 and beta-glucuronidase or the green fluorescent protein. Transient expression assays using onion epidermal cells and data from hypocotyl cells of stably transformed Arabidopsis demonstrated that COP1 carries a single, bipartite nuclear localization signal that functions independently of light. Nuclear exclusion was mediated by a novel and distinct signal, bordering the zinc-finger and coiled-coil motifs, that was able to redirect a heterologous nuclear protein to the cytoplasm. The cytoplasmic localization signal functioned in a light-independent manner. Light regulation of nuclear localization was reconstituted by combining the individual domains containing the nuclear localization signal and the cytoplasmic localization signal; the WD-40 repeat domain of COP1 was not required. However, phenotypic analysis of transgenic seedlings suggested that the constitutively nuclear-localized WD-40 repeat domain was able to mimic aspects of COP1 function, as indicated by exaggerated hypocotyl elongation under light conditions.  (+info)

(29/17430) LeProT1, a transporter for proline, glycine betaine, and gamma-amino butyric acid in tomato pollen.

During maturation, pollen undergoes a period of dehydration accompanied by the accumulation of compatible solutes. Solute import across the pollen plasma membrane, which occurs via proteinaceous transporters, is required to support pollen development and also for subsequent germination and pollen tube growth. Analysis of the free amino acid composition of various tissues in tomato revealed that the proline content in flowers was 60 times higher than in any other organ analyzed. Within the floral organs, proline was confined predominantly to pollen, where it represented >70% of total free amino acids. Uptake experiments demonstrated that mature as well as germinated pollen rapidly take up proline. To identify proline transporters in tomato pollen, we isolated genes homologous to Arabidopsis proline transporters. LeProT1 was specifically expressed both in mature and germinating pollen, as demonstrated by RNA in situ hybridization. Expression in a yeast mutant demonstrated that LeProT1 transports proline and gamma-amino butyric acid with low affinity and glycine betaine with high affinity. Direct uptake and competition studies demonstrate that LeProT1 constitutes a general transporter for compatible solutes.  (+info)

(30/17430) The CLAVATA1 receptor-like kinase requires CLAVATA3 for its assembly into a signaling complex that includes KAPP and a Rho-related protein.

The CLAVATA1 (CLV1) and CLAVATA3 (CLV3) genes are required to maintain the balance between cell proliferation and organ formation at the Arabidopsis shoot and flower meristems. CLV1 encodes a receptor-like protein kinase. We have found that CLV1 is present in two protein complexes in vivo. One is approximately 185 kD, and the other is approximately 450 kD. In each complex, CLV1 is part of a disulfide-linked multimer of approximately 185 kD. The 450-kD complex contains the protein phosphatase KAPP, which is a negative regulator of CLV1 signaling, and a Rho GTPase-related protein. In clv1 and clv3 mutants, CLV1 is found primarily in the 185-kD complex. We propose that CLV1 is present as an inactive disulfide-linked heterodimer and that CLV3 functions to promote the assembly of the active 450-kD complex, which then relays signal transduction through a Rho GTPase.  (+info)

(31/17430) Mutations in FIE, a WD polycomb group gene, allow endosperm development without fertilization.

A fundamental problem in biology is to understand how fertilization initiates reproductive development. Higher plant reproduction is unique because two fertilization events are required for sexual reproduction. First, a sperm must fuse with the egg to form an embryo. A second sperm must then fuse with the adjacent central cell nucleus that replicates to form an endosperm, which is the support tissue required for embryo and/or seedling development. Here, we report cloning of the Arabidopsis FERTILIZATION-INDEPENDENT ENDOSPERM (FIE) gene. The FIE protein is a homolog of the WD motif-containing Polycomb proteins from Drosophila and mammals. These proteins function as repressors of homeotic genes. A female gametophyte with a loss-of-function allele of fie undergoes replication of the central cell nucleus and initiates endosperm development without fertilization. These results suggest that the FIE Polycomb protein functions to suppress a critical aspect of early plant reproduction, namely, endosperm development, until fertilization occurs.  (+info)

(32/17430) Isolation and characterization of SYN1, a RAD21-like gene essential for meiosis in Arabidopsis.

The proper pairing, recombination, and segregation of chromosomes are central to meiosis and sexual reproduction. The syn1 mutation was previously identified as a synaptic mutant in a T-DNA-tagged population of plants. SYN1 has been isolated and found to exhibit similarity to Schizosaccharomyces pombe RAD21 and RAD21-like proteins, which are required for chromosome condensation and sister chromatid cohesion during mitosis. Plants homozygous for syn1 are male and female sterile and show defects in chromosome condensation and pairing beginning at leptonema of meiosis I. Fragmentation of the chromosomes was observed at metaphase I. Alternative promoters produced two SYN1 transcripts. One transcript was expressed at low levels in most tissues, whereas the other was expressed only in prebolting buds. DNA blot analyses suggest that Arabidopsis contains a small RAD21 gene family. Consistent with the DNA blot data, a second Arabidopsis RAD21-like gene has been identified. These results suggest that different RAD21-like proteins play essential roles in chromosome condensation and pairing during both meiosis and mitosis.  (+info)