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Signaling events leading to crassulacean acid metabolism induction in the common ice plant

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Tahar Taybi


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A rapid, semiquantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction assay was developed to investigate signal transduction events involved in the induction of Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) in detached common ice plant (Mesembryanthemum crystallinum) leaves. Transcript abundance of Ppc1, a gene encoding the CAM-specific isoform of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase, increased rapidly in response to osmotic stress (dehydration and mannitol), ionic stress (NaCl), and exogenous abscisic acid treatment, but failed to accumulate in response to exogenous cytokinin or methyl jasmonate. Stress-induced accumulation of Ppc1, GapC1, and Mdh1 transcripts was inhibited by pretreating leaves with the calcium chelator ethyleneglycol-bis(aminoethyl ether)-N,N'-tetraacetic acid, suggesting that extracellular calcium participates in signaling events leading to CAM induction. Treatment of unstressed detached leaves with ionomycin, a Ca(2+) ionophore, and thapsigargin, a Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitor, enhanced Ppc1 transcript accumulation, indicating that elevations in cytosolic [Ca(2+)] are likely to participate in signaling CAM induction. Inhibitors of Ca(2+)- or calmodulin-dependent protein kinases (N-[6-aminohexyl]-5-chloro-1-napthalenesulfonamide, Lavendustin C) and protein phosphatase 1 and 2A (okadaic acid) activity suppressed Ppc1 transcript accumulation in response to ionic and osmotic stresses, as well as abscisic acid treatment. These results suggest that both protein phosphorylation and dephosphorylation events participate in signaling during CAM induction. In contrast, pretreatment with cyclosporin A or ascomycin, inhibitors of protein phosphatase 2B activity, stimulated Ppc1 gene expression either directly or indirectly through promoting water loss.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Taybi T; Cushman JC

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Plant Physiology

Year: 1999

Volume: 121

Issue: 2

Pages: 545-556

Print publication date: 01/10/1999

ISSN (print): 0032-0889

ISSN (electronic): 1532-2548

Publisher: American Society of Plant Biologists


DOI: 10.1104/pp.121.2.545

PubMed id: 1051


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