Isolation and identification of dihydrochrysanolide and its 1-epimer from Chrysanthemum coronarium L.
A new sesquiterpene lactone (1) was isolated with known dihydrochrysanolide derivatives (2 and 3) from the flowers of Chrysanthemum coronarium L., and their structures were identified by spectroscopic data. The stereochemistry of the epimers (1 and 2) was determined from NOESY data and an X-ray crystallographic analysis. The isolated compounds (1-3) were examined for their cytotoxic activity against such human cell lines as A549, PC-3 and HCT-15. (+info)
Interaction between drought and chronic high temperature during kernel filling in wheat in a controlled environment.
Wheat plants (Triticum aestivum L. 'Lyallpur'), limited to a single culm, were grown at day/night temperatures of either 18/13 degrees C (moderate temperature), or 27/22 degrees C (chronic high temperature) from the time of anthesis. Plants were either non-droughted or subjected to two post-anthesis water stresses by withholding water from plants grown in different volumes of potting mix. In selected plants the demand for assimilates by the ear was reduced by removal of all but the five central spikelets. In non-droughted plants, it was confirmed that shading following anthesis (source limitation) reduced kernel dry weight at maturity, with a compensating increase in the dry weight of the remaining kernels when the total number of kernels was reduced (small sink). Reducing kernel number did not alter the effect of high temperature following anthesis on the dry weight of the remaining kernels at maturity, but reducing the number of kernels did result in a greater dry weight of the remaining kernels of droughted plants. However, the relationship between the response to drought and kernel number was confounded by a reduction in the extent of water stress associated with kernel removal. Data on the effect of water stress on kernel dry weight at maturity of plants with either the full complement or reduced numbers of kernels, and subjected to low and high temperatures following anthesis, indicate that the effect of drought on kernel dry weight may be reduced, in both absolute and relative terms, rather than enhanced, at high temperature. It is suggested that where high temperature and drought occur concurrently after anthesis there may be a degree of drought escape associated with chronic high temperature due to the reduction in the duration of kernel filling, even though the rate of water use may be enhanced by high temperature. (+info)
STY1 and STY2 promote the formation of apical tissues during Arabidopsis gynoecium development.
Gynoecium ontogenesis in Arabidopsis is accomplished by the co-ordinated activity of genes that control patterning and the regional differentiation of tissues, and ultimately results in the formation of a basal ovary, a short style and an apical stigma. A transposon insertion in the STYLISH1 (STY1) gene results in gynoecia with aberrant style morphology, while an insertion mutation in the closely related STYLISH2 (STY2) gene has no visible effect on gynoecium development. However, sty1-1 sty2-1 double mutant plants exhibit an enhanced sty1-1 mutant phenotype and are characterized by a further reduction in the amount of stylar and stigmatic tissues and decreased proliferation of stylar xylem. These data imply that STY1 and STY2 are partially redundant and that both genes promote style and stigma formation and influence vascular development during Arabidopsis gynoecium development. Consistently, STY1 and STY2 are expressed in the apical parts of the developing gynoecium and ectopic expression of either STY1 or STY2 driven by the CaMV 35S promoter is sufficient to transform valve cells into style cells. STY1::GUS and STY2::GUS activity is detected in many other organs as well as the gynoecium, suggesting that STY1 and STY2 may have additional functions. This is supported by the sty1-1 sty2-1 double mutants producing rosette and cauline leaves with a higher degree of serration than wild-type leaves. STY1 and STY2 are members of a small gene family, and encode proteins with a RING finger-like motif. Double mutant analyses indicate that STY1 genetically interacts with SPATULA and possibly also with CRABS CLAW. (+info)
Are there associations between grain-filling rate and photosynthesis in the flag leaves of field-grown rice?
Rate of grain filling in terms of dry mass accumulated per panicle per day was measured in field-grown rice in the dry season in the Philippines and compared to rates of light-saturated photosynthesis per unit leaf area (P(max)) measured at 350 micro l l(-1) CO(2) for 21 d after flowering. Five new plant type (tropical japonica) varieties (NPT) and one indica variety (IR72) were used and these gave some variation in rates and patterns of grain filling. A rapid grain-filling phase (RGFP) occurred approximately 10 d after flowering in most varieties. There was no consistent relationship in any variety between the rate of grain-filling and P(max) and chlorophyll content, both of which remained mostly unchanged throughout grain filling. Significant declines in the amount of total leaf protein and ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase-oxygenase (Rubisco) occurred, but these did not occur at the same time as the RGFP in all varieties. A decrease in the ratio of chlorophyll a/b preceded these changes and a transient rise in chlorophyll content was also observed in four varieties at this time. There was no significant change in leaf non-structural carbohydrate content during or following the RGFP. It is concluded that the decline in Rubisco and protein content in NPT was not reflected in photosynthetic activity. Hence in these field experiments Rubisco accumulated to a level in excess of photosynthetic requirements, serving as a store of nitrogen for grain filling. (+info)
Population growth rates: issues and an application.
Current issues in population dynamics are discussed in the context of The Royal Society Discussion Meeting 'Population growth rate: determining factors and role in population regulation'. In particular, different views on the centrality of population growth rates to the study of population dynamics and the role of experiments and theory are explored. Major themes emerging include the role of modern statistical techniques in bringing together experimental and theoretical studies, the importance of long-term experimentation and the need for ecology to have model systems, and the value of population growth rate as a means of understanding and predicting population change. The last point is illustrated by the application of a recently introduced technique, integral projection modelling, to study the population growth rate of a monocarpic perennial plant, its elasticities to different life-history components and the evolution of an evolutionarily stable strategy size at flowering. (+info)
Mutations in the gravity persistence signal loci in Arabidopsis disrupt the perception and/or signal transduction of gravitropic stimuli.
Gravity plays a fundamental role in plant growth and development, yet little is understood about the early events of gravitropism. To identify genes affected in the signal perception and/or transduction phase of the gravity response, a mutant screen was devised using cold treatment to delay the gravity response of inflorescence stems of Arabidopsis. Inflorescence stems of Arabidopsis show no response to gravistimulation at 4 degrees C for up to 3 h. However, when gravistimulated at 4 degrees C and then returned to vertical at room temperature (RT), stems bend in response to the previous, horizontal gravistimulation (H. Fukaki, H. Fujisawa, M. Tasaka  Plant Physiology 110: 933-943). This indicates that gravity perception, but not the gravitropic response, occurs at 4 degrees C. Recessive mutations were identified at three loci using this cold effect on gravitropism to screen for gravity persistence signal (gps) mutants. All three mutants had an altered response after gravistimulation at 4 degrees C, yet had phenotypically normal responses to stimulations at RT. gps1-1 did not bend in response to the 4 degrees C gravity stimulus upon return to RT. gps2-1 responded to the 4 degrees C stimulus but bent in the opposite direction. gps3-1 over-responded after return to RT, continuing to bend to an angle greater than wild-type plants. At 4 degrees C, starch-containing statoliths sedimented normally in both wild-type and the gps mutants, but auxin transport was abolished at 4 degrees C. These results are consistent with GPS loci affecting an aspect of the gravity signal perception/transduction pathway that occurs after statolith sedimentation, but before auxin transport. (+info)
SUPERWOMAN1 and DROOPING LEAF genes control floral organ identity in rice.
We analyzed recessive mutants of two homeotic genes in rice, SUPERWOMAN1 (SPW1) and DROOPING LEAF (DL). The homeotic mutation spw1 transforms stamens and lodicules into carpels and palea-like organs, respectively. Two spw1 alleles, spw1-1 and spw1-2, show the same floral phenotype and did not affect vegetative development. We show that SPW1 is a rice APETALA3 homolog, OsMADS16. In contrast, two strong alleles of the dl locus, drooping leaf-superman1 (dl-sup1) and drooping leaf-superman2 (dl-sup2), cause the complete transformation of the gynoecium into stamens. In these strong mutants, many ectopic stamens are formed in the region where the gynoecium is produced in the wild-type flower and they are arranged in a non-whorled, alternate pattern. The intermediate allele dl-1 (T65), results in an increase in the number of stamens and stigmas, and carpels occasionally show staminoid characteristics. In the weakest mutant, dl-2, most of the flowers are normal. All four dl alleles cause midrib-less drooping leaves. The flower of the double mutant, spw1 dl-sup, produces incompletely differentiated organs indefinitely after palea-like organs are produced in the position where lodicules are formed in the wild-type flower. These incompletely differentiated organs are neither stamens nor carpels, but have partial floral identity. Based on genetic and molecular results, we postulate a model of stamen and carpel specification in rice, with DL as a novel gene controlling carpel identity and acting mutually and antagonistically to the class B gene, SPW1. (+info)
Separable roles of UFO during floral development revealed by conditional restoration of gene function.
The UNUSUAL FLORAL ORGANS (UFO) gene is required for several aspects of floral development in Arabidopsis including specification of organ identity in the second and third whorls and the proper pattern of primordium initiation in the inner three whorls. UFO is expressed in a dynamic pattern during the early phases of flower development. Here we dissect the role of UFO by ubiquitously expressing it in ufo loss-of-function flowers at different developmental stages and for various durations using an ethanol-inducible expression system. The previously known functions of UFO could be separated and related to its expression at specific stages of development. We show that a 24- to 48-hour period of UFO expression from floral stage 2, before any floral organs are visible, is sufficient to restore normal petal and stamen development. The earliest requirement for UFO is during stage 2, when the endogenous UFO gene is transiently expressed in the centre of the wild-type flower and is required to specify the initiation patterns of petal, stamen and carpel primordia. Petal and stamen identity is determined during stages 2 or 3, when UFO is normally expressed in the presumptive second and third whorl. Although endogenous UFO expression is absent from the stamen whorl from stage 4 onwards, stamen identity can be restored by UFO activation up to stage 6. We also observed floral phenotypes not observed in loss-of-function or constitutive gain-of-function backgrounds, revealing additional roles of UFO in outgrowth of petal primordia. (+info)