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Plant Mol Biol. 2003 Jul;52(4):775-86.

Microarray and differential display identify genes involved in jasmonate-dependent anther development.

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Institute of Biological Chemistry, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164-6340, USA.


Jasmonate (JA) is a signaling compound essential for anther development and pollen fertility in Arabidopsis. Mutations that block the pathway of JA synthesis result into male sterility. To understand the processes of anther and pollen maturation, we used microarray and differential display approaches to compare gene expression pattern in anthers of wild-type Arabidopsis and the male-sterile mutant, opr3. Microarray experiment revealed 25 genes that were up-regulated more than 1.8-fold in wild-type anthers as compared to mutant anthers. Experiments based on differential display identified 13 additional genes up-regulated in wild-type anthers compared to opr3 for a total of 38 differentially expressed genes. Searches of the Arabidopsis and non-redundant databases disclosed known or likely functions for 28 of the 38 genes identified, while 10 genes encode proteins of unknown function. Northern blot analysis of eight representative clones as probes confirmed low expression in opr3 anthers compared with wild-type anthers. JA responsiveness of these same genes was also investigated by northern blot analysis of anther RNA isolated from wild-type and opr3 plants, In these experiments, four genes were induced in opr3 anthers within 0.5-1 h of JA treatment while the remaining genes were up-regulated only 1-8 h after JA application. None of these genes was induced by JA in anthers of the coil mutant that is deficient in JA responsiveness. The four early-induced genes in opr3 encode lipoxygenase, a putative bHLH transcription factor, epithiospecifier protein and an unknown protein. We propose that these and other early components may be involved in JA signaling and in the initiation of developmental processes. The four late genes encode an extensin-like protein, a peptide transporter and two unknown proteins, which may represent components required later in anther and pollen maturation. Transcript profiling has provided a successful approach to identify genes involved in anther and pollen maturation in Arabidopsis.

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