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Plant Physiol. 1996 Aug;111(4):1077-83.

Regulation of Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh Arginine decarboxylase by potassium deficiency stress.

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  • 1Botany Department, University of Georgia, Athens 30602-7271, USA. watson@dogwood.botany.uga.edu


Arginine decarboxylase (ARGdc) is the first enzyme in one of the two pathways to putrescine in plants. ARGdc enzyme activity has been shown to be induced by many environmental factors, including potassium deficiency stress. We investigated the mechanism for induction of ARGdc activity during potassium deficiency stress in Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. We show that A. thaliana responds to potassium deficiency stress by increasing ARGdc activity by up to 10-fold over unstressed plants with a corresponding increase in putrescine levels of up to 20-fold. Spermidine and spermine levels do not increase proportionately. Northern analysis showed no increase in ARGdc mRNA levels correlated with the increase in ARGdc enzyme activity. Western analysis revealed that there was no difference between ARGdc protein levels in stressed plants compared with controls. The increase in ARGdc enzyme activity due to potassium deficiency stress does not appear to involve changes in mRNA or protein abundance.

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