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J Genet Genomics. 2011 Feb;38(2):77-87. doi: 10.1016/j.jcg.2011.01.005.

Identification and characterization of putative CIPK genes in maize.

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State Key Lab of Crop Genetics and Germplasm Enhancement, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China.


Calcium (Ca) plays a crucial role as a second messenger in intracellular signaling elicited by developmental and environmental cues. Calcineurin B-like proteins (CBLs) and their target proteins, CBL-interacting protein kinases (CIPKs) have emerged as a key Ca(2+)-mediated signaling network in response to stresses in plants. Bioinformatic analysis was used to identify 43 putative ZmCIPK (Zea mays CIPK) genes in the genome of maize inbred line B73. Based on gene structures, these ZmCIPKs were divided into intron-rich and intron-poor groups. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the ZmCIPK family had a high evolutionary relationship with the rice CIPK family of 30 members. Microarray data and RT-PCR assay showed that ZmCIPK genes transcriptionally responded to abiotic stresses, and that 24, 31, 20 and 19 ZmCIPK genes were up-regulated by salt, drought, heat and cold stresses, respectively. There were different expression patterns of ZmCIPKs between cold-tolerant inbred line B73 and cold-sensitive inbred line Mo17 under cold stress. Our findings will aid further molecular dissection of biological functions of the CIPKs in maize, and provide new insight into the CBL-CIPK signaling network in plants.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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