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J Exp Bot. 2003 Aug;54(389):1865-77.

Identification of a strawberry gene encoding a non-specific lipid transfer protein that responds to ABA, wounding and cold stress.

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  • 1Departamento de Bioquímica y Biología Molecular e Instituto Andaluz de Biotecnología. Campus Universitario de Rabanales, edificio Severo Ochoa (C-6). Universidad de Córdoba, 14071-Córdoba, Spain.


cDNA and genomic clones encoding a strawberry (Fragariaxananassa cv. Chandler) non-specific lipid transfer protein (Fxaltp gene) were isolated and characterized. The spatio-temporal expression pattern and structural features of this gene were studied for the first time in strawberry, a non-climacteric fruit of agricultural importance. The architecture and the encoded amino acid sequence of this non-climacteric fruit ltp gene were similar to those of other plant LTPs previously reported, and presents the eight cysteine residues and other features characteristic of plant LTPs. In addition, the deduced protein posseses an N-terminal signal peptide and lacks the K/HDEL retention signal, indicating that the strawberry LTP protein would enter the secretory pathway. In situ studies have shown that the Fxaltp gene is expressed in the epidermal cell layer of the strawberry fruit receptacle and achenes, flowers, and within the cell layer surrounding the endosperm. These results suggest that this Fxaltp gene promoter could be used as an endogenous promoter for biotechnological purposes in strawberry. Computer analysis using the PLACE database predicted the presence of several putative cis-regulatory sequences in response to abscisic acid and cold or wounding stresses within the Fxaltp 5'-flanking region. Accordingly, the strawberry gene responds to ABA and SA, but not to salt and heat stresses. It is also reported that ltp gene expression in strawberry is stimulated by wounding and repressed by cold stresses.

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