(1/173) A new method for on-line measurement of diurnal change in potato tuber growth under controlled environments.

An on-line laser micrometer system was applied to measurement of diurnal change in potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) tuber growth. Diameters of the potato tuber were scanned by moving a laser micrometer along the longitudinal axis of the tuber at constant speed, and tuber volume was evaluated as an aggregate of thin discs. A single potato tuber, without competitive sink tubers in the plant, was grown in controlled air at 20 degrees C and 80% RH, and tuber volume was measured at 30 min intervals. During the growth experiment, the potato tuber increased in size without any inhibitory effect of periodical laser beam irradiation. Greatest expansion generally occurred during the early night, and transient contraction of the tuber occurred at the beginning of the light period.  (+info)

(2/173) Relationship between the electrical and rheological properties of potato tuber tissue after various forms of processing.

The impedance at frequencies of 1-1000 kHz and dynamic bending storage modulus measured by the vibrating reed method were compared for potato tuber tissue, which had been processed by various methods. Raw potato tuber tissue strips were either heated for 30 min up to 100 degrees C or frozen-thawed. Some samples were osmotically dehydrated in a mannitol solution up to a concentration of 0.7 mol/l. The electrical reactance correlated well with the storage modulus of heated or frozen-thawed potato tissues, but not with the storage modulus of the mannitol-treated tissue. The storage modulus appeared to be strongly dependent on the turgor pressure of the cells which was drastically decreased by the heating, freezing-thawing, and osmotic treatments. The electrical properties reflect the cell integrity, and a large difference was observed between the change in impedance after heating or freezing-thawing, and that after the osmotic treatment. A significant change in the electric properties was also observed for a starch suspension at the gelatinization temperature. However, the contribution due to gelatinization did not appear to play an important role in the change of electrical properties of potato tissue by heating.  (+info)

(3/173) Response of potato tuber cell division and growth to shade and elevated CO2.

Plants adjust their sink-organ growth rates, development and distribution of dry matter in response to whole-plant photosynthate status. To advance understanding of these processes, potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) plants were subjected to CO(2) and light flux treatments, and early tuber growth was assessed. Atmospheric CO(2) (700 or 350 micro mol mol(-1)) and light flux (shade and control illumination) treatments were imposed at two growth stages: tuber initiation (TI) and tuber bulking (TB). Elevated CO(2) increased accumulation of total net biomass when imposed at both stages, and increased tuber growth rate by about 36 %, but did not increase the number of tubers. Elevated CO(2) increased the number of cells in tubers at both TI and TB stages, whereas shade substantially decreased the number of cells at both stages. Generally, treatments did not affect cell volume or the proportion of nuclei endoreduplicating (repeated nuclear DNA replication in the absence of cell division), but the shade treatment led to a decrease in cell volume at TB and a decrease in endoreduplication at TI. Elevated CO(2) increased, and shade decreased, glucose concentration and soluble invertase activity in the cambial zones at both TI and TB, whereas sucrose concentration and activities of glucokinase, fructokinase, cell-wall-bound invertase and thymidine kinase were unaffected. Modulation of tuber cell division was responsible for much of the growth response to whole-plant photosynthate status, and treatments affected cambial-zone glucose and soluble invertase in a pattern suggesting involvement of a glucose signalling pathway.  (+info)

(4/173) Suppression of a vegetative MADS box gene of potato activates axillary meristem development.

Potato MADS box 1 (POTM1) is a member of the SQUAMOSA-like family of plant MADS box genes isolated from an early stage tuber cDNA library. The RNA of POTM1 is most abundant in vegetative meristems of potato (Solanum tuberosum), accumulating specifically in the tunica and corpus layers of the meristem, the procambium, the lamina of new leaves, and newly formed axillary meristems. Transgenic lines with reduced levels of POTM1 mRNA exhibited decreased apical dominance accompanied by a compact growth habit and a reduction in leaf size. Suppression lines produced truncated shoot clusters from stem buds and, in a model system, exhibited enhanced axillary bud growth instead of producing a tuber. This enhanced axillary bud growth was not the result of increased axillary bud formation. Tuber yields were reduced and rooting of cuttings was strongly inhibited in POTM1 suppression lines. Both starch accumulation and the activation of cell division occurred in specific regions of the vegetative meristems of the POTM1 transgenic lines. Cytokinin levels in axillary buds of a transgenic suppression line increased 2- to 3-fold. These results imply that POTM1 mediates the control of axillary bud development by regulating cell growth in vegetative meristems.  (+info)

(5/173) Reduction of cholesterol and glycoalkaloid levels in transgenic potato plants by overexpression of a type 1 sterol methyltransferase cDNA.

Transgenic potato (Solanum tuberosum cv Desiree) plants overexpressing a soybean (Glycine max) type 1 sterol methyltransferase (GmSMT1) cDNA were generated and used to study sterol biosynthesis in relation to the production of toxic glycoalkaloids. Transgenic plants displayed an increased total sterol level in both leaves and tubers, mainly due to increased levels of the 24-ethyl sterols isofucosterol and sitosterol. The higher total sterol level was due to increases in both free and esterified sterols. However, the level of free cholesterol, a nonalkylated sterol, was decreased. Associated with this was a decreased glycoalkaloid level in leaves and tubers, down to 41% and 63% of wild-type levels, respectively. The results show that glycoalkaloid biosynthesis can be down-regulated in transgenic potato plants by reducing the content of free nonalkylated sterols, and they support the view of cholesterol as a precursor in glycoalkaloid biosynthesis.  (+info)

(6/173) Absorption/metabolism of sulforaphane and quercetin, and regulation of phase II enzymes, in human jejunum in vivo.

For the first time the human intestinal effective permeability, estimated from the luminal disappearance and intestinal metabolism of phytochemicals, sulforaphane and quercetin-3,4'-glucoside, as well as the simultaneous changes in gene expression in vivo in enterocytes, has been studied in the human jejunum in vivo (Loc-I-Gut). Both compounds as components of an onion and broccoli extract could readily permeate the enterocytes in the perfused jejunal segment. At the physiologically relevant, dietary concentration tested, the average effective jejunal permeability (Peff) and percentage absorbed (+/- S.D.) were 18.7 +/- 12.6 x 10-4 cm/s and 74 +/- 29% for sulforaphane and 8.9 +/- 7.1 x 10-4 cm/s and 60 +/- 31% for quercetin-3,4'-diglucoside, respectively. Furthermore, a proportion of each compound was conjugated and excreted back into the lumen as sulforaphane-glutathione and quercetin-3'-glucuronide. The capacity of the isolated segment to deconjugate quercetin from quercetin-3,4'-diglucoside during the perfusion was much higher than the beta-glucosidase activity of the preperfusion jejunal contents, indicating that the majority (79-100%) of the beta-glucosidase capacity derives from the enterocytes in situ. Simultaneously, we determined short-term changes in gene expression in exfoliated enterocytes, which showed 2.0 +/- 0.4-fold induction of glutathione transferase A1 (GSTA1) mRNA (p < 0.002) and 2.4 +/- 1.2-fold induction of UDP-glucuronosyl transferase 1A1 (UGT1A1) mRNA (p < 0.02). The changes in gene expression were also seen in differentiated Caco-2 cells, where sulforaphane was responsible for induction of GSTA1 and quercetin for induction of UGT1A1. These results show that food components have the potential to modify drug metabolism in the human enterocyte in vivo very rapidly.  (+info)

(7/173) Interacting transcription factors from the three-amino acid loop extension superclass regulate tuber formation.

Using the yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) two-hybrid system and a potato (Solanum tuberosum) KNOX protein, designated POTH1, as bait, we have identified seven distinct interacting proteins from a stolon library of potato. All seven cDNAs are members of the BEL1-like family of transcription factors. Among these proteins, there are at least four regions of high sequence conservation including the homeodomain, the proline-tyrosine-proline three-amino acid loop extension, the SKY box, and a 120-amino acid region upstream from the homeodomain. Through deletion analysis, we identified a protein-binding domain present in the carboxy end of the KNOX domain of POTH1. The protein-binding domain in the BEL1 protein is located in the amino-terminal one-half of the 120-residue conserved region of the BELs. RNA-blot analysis showed differential patterns of RNA accumulation for the BELs in various potato organs. The level of StBEL5 mRNA increased in response to a short-day photoperiod in both leaves and stolons. Similar to sense mutants of POTH1, transgenic lines that overexpressed StBEL5 exhibited enhanced tuber formation even under noninductive conditions. Unlike POTH1 sense lines, however, these BEL lines did not exhibit the extreme leaf and stem morphology characteristic of KNOX overexpressers and displayed a more rapid rate of growth than control plants. Both StBEL5 and POTH1 sense lines exhibited an increase in cytokinin levels in shoot tips. StBEL5 lines also exhibited a decrease in the levels of GA 20-oxidase1 mRNA in stolon tips from long-day plants. Our results demonstrate an interaction between KNOX and BEL1-like transcription factors of potato that may potentially regulate processes of development.  (+info)

(8/173) Ultrastructure of potato tubers formed in microgravity under controlled environmental conditions.

Previous spaceflight reports attribute changes in plant ultrastructure to microgravity, but it was thought that the changes might result from growth in uncontrolled environments during spaceflight. To test this possibility, potato explants were examined (a leaf, axillary bud, and small stem segment) grown in the ASTROCULTURETM plant growth unit, which provided a controlled environment. During the 16 d flight of space shuttle Columbia (STS-73), the axillary bud of each explant developed into a mature tuber. Upon return to Earth, tuber slices were examined by transmission electron microscopy. Results showed that the cell ultrastructure of flight-grown tubers could not be distinguished from that of tuber cells grown in the same growth unit on the ground. No differences were observed in cellular features such as protein crystals, plastids with starch grains, mitochondria, rough ER, or plasmodesmata. Cell wall structure, including underlying microtubules, was typical of ground-grown plants. Because cell walls of tubers formed in space were not required to provide support against the force due to gravity, it was hypothesized that these walls might exhibit differences in wall components as compared with walls formed in Earth-grown tubers. Wall components were immunolocalized at the TEM level using monoclonal antibodies JIM 5 and JIM 7, which recognize epitopes of pectins, molecules thought to contribute to wall rigidity and cell adhesion. No difference in presence, abundance or distribution of these pectin epitopes was seen between space- and Earth-grown tubers. This evidence indicates that for the parameters studied, microgravity does not affect the cellular structure of plants grown under controlled environmental conditions.  (+info)