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Planta. 2010 Jun;232(1):109-19. doi: 10.1007/s00425-010-1152-7. Epub 2010 Apr 8.

Immunolocalization of beta-1-4-galactan and its relationship with lignin distribution in developing compression wood of Cryptomeria japonica.

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Laboratory of Tree Cell Biology, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan.


Compression wood (CW) contains higher quantities of beta-1-4-galactan than does normal wood (NW). However, the physiological roles and ultrastructural distribution of beta-1-4-galactan during CW formation are still not well understood. The present work investigated deposition of beta-1-4-galactan in differentiating tracheids of Cryptomeria japonica during CW formation using an immunological probe (LM5) combined with immunomicroscopy. Our immunolabeling studies clearly showed that differences in the distribution of beta-1-4-galactan between NW (and opposite wood, OW) and CW are initiated during the formation of the S(1) layer. At this stage, CW was strongly labeled in the S(1) layer, whereas no label was observed in the S(1) layer of NW and OW. Immunogold labeling showed that beta-1-4-galactan in the S(1) layer of CW tracheids significantly decreased during the formation of the S(2) layer. Most beta-1-4-galactan labeling was present in the outer S(2) region in mature CW tracheids, and was absent in the inner S(2) layer that contained helical cavities in the cell wall. In addition, delignified CW tracheids showed significantly more labeling of beta-1-4-galactan in the secondary cell wall, suggesting that lignin is likely to mask beta-1-4-galactan epitopes. The study clearly showed that beta-1-4-galactan in CW was mainly deposited in the outer portion of the secondary cell wall, indicating that its distribution may be spatially consistent with lignin distribution in CW tracheids of Cryptomeria japonica.

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