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Mol Genet Genomics. 2001 Jun;265(4):576-84.

The maize WD-repeat gene ZmRbAp1 encodes a member of the MSI/RbAp sub-family and is differentially expressed during endosperm development.

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Istituto Sperimentale per la Cerealicoltura, Sezione di Bergamo, Italy.


Members of the MSI/RbAp sub-family of WD-repeat proteins are widespread in eukaryotic organisms and form part of multiprotein complexes that are involved in various biological pathways, including chromatin assembly, regulation of gene transcription, and cell division. In this study we report the isolation and characterization of a cDNA sequence from Zea mays, which encodes an RbAp-like protein (ZmRbAp1) that binds acetylated histones H3 and H4 and suppresses mutations that have a negative effect on the Ras/cAMP pathway in yeast. The ZmRbAp genes form a gene family and are expressed in different tissues of Z. mays L. plants. Determination of its expression pattern during maize seed development revealed that ZmRbAp transcripts are abundant during the initial stages of endosperm formation. In addition, the transcripts are specifically localized in shoot apical meristem and leaf primordia of the embryo. A possible role for the ZmRbAp genes in early endosperm differentiation and plant development is discussed.

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