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Plant Mol Biol. 1999 Sep;41(2):195-206.

Regulation of developmental senescence is conserved between Arabidopsis and Brassica napus.

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Department of Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin, Madison 53706-1544, USA.


SAG12 is a developmentally controlled, senescence-specific gene from Arabidopsis which encodes a cysteine protease. Using SAG12 as a probe, we isolated two SAG12 homologues (BnSAG12-1 and BnSAG12-2) from Brassica napus. Structural comparisons and expression studies indicate that these two genes are orthologues of SAG12. The expression patterns of BnSAG12-1 and BnSAG12-2 in Arabidopsis demonstrate that the senescence-specific regulation of this class of cysteine proteases is conserved across these species. Gel-shift assays using the essential promoter regions of SAG12, BnSAG12-1, and BnSAG12-2 show that the extent of binding of a senescence-specific, DNA-binding protein from Arabidopsis is proportional to the expression levels of these genes in Arabidopsis. Therefore, the expression levels of these genes may reflect the affinities of the senescence-specific DNA-binding protein for the promoter element.

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