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Plant Physiol. 2000 Mar;122(3):803-12.

Differential screening indicates a dramatic change in mRNA profiles during grape berry ripening. Cloning and characterization of cDNAs encoding putative cell wall and stress response proteins.

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Cooperative Research Centre for Viticulture, P.O. Box 145, Glen Osmond, South Australia 5064, Australia.


We used differential screening to isolate ripening-associated cDNAs from a Shiraz grape (Vitis vinifera L.) berry cDNA library. A rapid increase in the mRNA levels of a number of cDNAs not present in unripe fruit occurred in grape berries at the onset of ripening. The putative translation products of some of these clones had homologs in other species that are involved in cell wall structure. These included four proline-rich proteins, a small protein that is similar to the non-catalytic, N-terminal domain of some pectin methylesterases, and two other glutamate-rich proteins. The remainder of the clones encoded putative stress response proteins. These included two thaumatin-like proteins, a metallothionein, a transcription factor, a cytochrome P450 enzyme, and proteins induced by water, sugar, and/or cold stress in other species. Many of the homologs of the grape cDNAs thought to be involved in cell wall structure or stress-related responses also accumulate in a developmental manner in other plants. This may indicate that the grape mRNAs accumulate in response to stresses such as the storage of high concentrations of sugars and rapid cell expansion, or they may accumulate as part of the ripening developmental program.

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