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Plant Physiol. 1992 Jun; 99(2): 607–614.
PMCID: PMC1080507

Accumulation of Group 3 Late Embryogenesis Abundant Proteins in Zea mays Embryos 1

Roles of Abscisic Acid and the Viviparous-1 Gene Product


Several different types of proteins that are modulated by abscisic acid (ABA) accumulate in developing embryos of maize (Zea mays L.). Some of these proteins are specific to the developing seed, such as the storage globulin, GLB1, whereas others are involved in general responses to water deficit. Here we describe a maize protein family of this second type, a Group 3 late embryogenesis abundant (MLG3). Like other proteins of this class, MLG3 polypeptides are ABA-responsive. They are found in maturing seeds and in dehydrating plant tissues. Antigenically related proteins are found in other cereals. To distinguish the regulation of developmentally programmed ABA responses from those that are environmentally induced, we compared the ontological pattern and accumulation requirements of MLG3 polypeptides with those we previously described for GLB1. GLB1 accumulation begins early in the maturation phase and specifically requires high levels of ABA and the participation of the Viviparous-1 (Vp1) gene product. Vp1 is required for other ABA-modulated events in maize seed development as well. In experiments using vp1 mutants and mutants deficient in ABA synthesis (vp5 mutation), we show that MLG3 accumulation also is dependent upon ABA, but it shows striking differences from GLB1. MLG3 accumulates much later in embryogenesis, coincident with the onset of dehydration. In contrast to GLB1, MLG3 proteins can be induced by de novo ABA synthesis in response to culturing in high osmoticum. Unlike GLB1, MLG3 has no specific requirement for the Vp1 gene product.

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Selected References

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