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J Proteome Res. 2012 Jun 1;11(6):3326-43. doi: 10.1021/pr3001157. Epub 2012 May 14.

Mitochondrial proteome heterogeneity between tissues from the vegetative and reproductive stages of Arabidopsis thaliana development.

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ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology & Centre for Comparative Analysis of Biomolecular Networks, M316, The University of Western Australia , 35 Stirling Highway, Crawley WA 6009, Australia.


Specialization of the mitochondrial proteome in Arabidopsis has the potential to underlie the roles of these organelles at different developmental time points and in specific organs; however, most research to date has been limited to studies of mitochondrial composition from a few vegetative tissue types. To provide further insight into the extent of mitochondrial heterogeneity in Arabidopsis, mitochondria isolated from six organ/cell types, leaf, root, cell culture, flower, bolt stem, and silique, were analyzed. Of the 286 protein spots on a 2-D gel of the mitochondrial proteome, the abundance of 237 spots was significantly varied between different samples. Identification of these spots revealed a nonredundant set of 83 proteins which were differentially expressed between organ/cell types, and the protein identification information can be analyzed in an integrated manner in an interactive fashion online. A number of mitochondrial protein spots were identified as being derived from the same genes in Arabidopsis but differed in their pI, indicating organ-specific variation in the post-translational modifications, or in their MW, suggesting differences in truncated mitochondrial products accumulating in different tissues. Comparisons of the proteomic data for the major isoforms with microarray analysis showed a positive correlation between mRNA and mitochondrial protein abundance and 60-90% concordance between changes in protein and transcript abundance. These analyses demonstrate that, while mitochondrial proteins are controlled transcriptionally by the nucleus, post-transcriptional regulation and/or post-translational modifications play a vital role in modulating the state or regulation of proteins in key biochemical pathways in plant mitochondria for specific functions. The integration of protein abundance and protein modification data with respiratory measurements, enzyme assays, and transcript data sets has allowed the identification of organ-enhanced differences in central carbon and amino acid metabolism pathways and provides ranked lists of mitochondrial proteins that are strongly transcriptionally regulated vs those whose abundance or activity is strongly influenced by a variety of post-transcriptional processes.

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